School Choice Score: 0%
Iowa’s tax credit scholarship’s program’s fatal flaw is the incredibly low cap of $12 million which drastically hurts its ability to not only aid a lot of students in Iowa but also limits the amount that each of them can receive in a scholarship. The high numbers in the choice share rankings are likely just because many people take advantage of a tax deduction for private school tuition which doesn’t provide opportunity for most low-income students.
- Source: EdChoice
Charter Schools Score: 0%
The only entity that is able to authorize charter schools in Iowa is local school districts. Local districts have not been keen to authorize charter schools that may compete with them and thus there are only three charter schools in the entire state. These schools operate as alternative district schools and have done nothing to provide students with real options outside of traditional public schools.
Online Learning Score: 65%
However, other state policies in Iowa create favorable conditions for access to high-quality online content and high-quality online instruction. The Iowa Legislature Codified the Department of Education’s virtual school program, Iowa Learning Online, providing $4,500,000 over three years in expansion funds. The state’s two full-time virtual academies are in the second year of a three-year pilot, and Iowa’s “one to one” schools/districts continued to increase in 2013.
Teacher Quality Score: 65%
While teachers in Iowa are required to have student, achievement play a role in their evaluations those measures do not have to be objective measures of student achievement or growth. Being ineffective in the classroom is not grounds for dismissal and evidence of effectiveness is not taken into account when making tenure related decisions.