Waiver gives Iowa school districts flexibility to best meet needs of students
DES MOINES - The Iowa Department of Education today received a waiver from the U.S. Department of Education allowing for flexibility in the use of federal funds to best meet the needs of students and educators during the COVID-19 national emergency.
The new flexibilities, authorized under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, eliminate some restrictions on federal K-12 education funds dedicated to areas such as technology infrastructure and teacher training on continuous learning during the national emergency. Continuous learning encompasses any methodology used to extend learning beyond brick and mortar district buildings—online learning, e-learning, distance learning, and virtual learning.
“We are committed to supporting our schools and educators as they implement creative educational solutions during these challenging times,” said Iowa Department of Education Director Ann Lebo. “We know that new professional learning opportunities, additional technology and uniform, consistent Wi-Fi access for students are needed as schools develop and implement continuous learning plans. This waiver provides Iowa with the flexibility needed for schools to best meet the needs of their students and families.”
While the waiver has been granted, the Department is seeking public comment as required. The Department will provide more information to schools as soon as details are available.