Governor orders Iowa public schools closed for the rest of the school year

Gov. Kim Reynolds on Friday ordered Iowa’s public schools to remain closed for the remainder of the school year.

Remote learning opportunities will be required for local school districts.

As of Monday, the Iowa Department of Education announced that 506 school districts and accredited nonpublic schools submitted plans to offer continuous learning opportunities for students while their brick-and-mortar buildings are closed.

“We want to commend our schools for their hard work in developing and now implementing continuous learning solutions that best meet the needs of their students, families and communities,” said Iowa Department of Education Director Ann Lebo. “These continuous learning options provide schools with much needed flexibility while also ensuring engaging, high-quality experiences for students. We are committed to supporting our schools as they maximize learning for their students during these challenging times.”

All 327 public school districts in the state submitted plans. Of those, 285 will offer voluntary educational enrichment opportunities, six will provide required educational services and 36 will offer a combination of the two. Of 179 accredited nonpublic schools that submitted plans, 73 will offer voluntary educational enrichment opportunities, 80 will provide required educational services and 26 will offer a combination of the two.

For schools that provide required educational services, attendance will be taken and lessons will be graded. Under the voluntary educational enrichment opportunities option, student participation is voluntary and no grade or credit is given. Districts and accredited nonpublic schools that decide not to offer continuous learning must make up missed days of instruction.