NW Iowa Districts Set School Start Dates

Northwest Iowa — The school start date debate was settled in April. Now, a month later, most northwest Iowa school boards have chosen a district start date.
chevy school bus_sxc
Iowa Governor Terry Branstad signed Iowa’s new “school start date” policy into law on April 10th.

There had been a law on the books for over 30 years that said school is supposed to start the week that includes the first of September, but the Department of Education was routinely granting waivers that let schools start earlier and earlier. Branstad said that led to the point where some schools were starting in the early part of August, which was causing a lot of concerns for a lot of Iowa families. The bill Branstad signed into law sets August 23rd as the earliest date Iowa schools may start the fall semester.

In our part of northwest Iowa, all but two public school districts have set their fall start date.

This year, that August 23rd date happens to be a Sunday. Starting on the first possible day, Monday, August 24th, will be Harris-Lake Park and South O’Brien. Starting on Tuesday, August 25th, will be George Little Rock, Rock Valley, and Sioux Center. Starting on Wednesday, August 26th, will be Central Lyon, MOC/FV, Sheldon, Sibley Ocheyedan, and West Sioux. Bucking the trend will be West Lyon. Their students won’t have to report to school until Monday, August 31st.

The Boyden Hull school board will talk about what day to start school at their meeting this Monday, May 11. The Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn School Board will discuss the issue at their Monday, May 18th meeting.

If your browser or device cannot access the audio player above, click here for the sound byte.