More Des Moines students leave district than predicted
Nearly 400 Des Moines students have applied for open enrollment to leave the school district for the upcoming school year, reports the Quad-City Times.
Why it matters: It was predicted Des Moines would lose 360 students, equating to $2.7 million. That number is higher now — further straining a financially struggling district.
State of play: Des Moines schools were historically allowed to deny open enrollment requests to maintain socioeconomic equity.
- In the district, about 75% of students qualify for free or reduced lunch — a much higher number than surrounding districts.
- But in May, a Republican-led law went into effect that eliminated Des Moines and four other school districts' abilities to deny requests based on trying to maintain diversity.
The big picture: Iowa Republicans made a hard push for school choice this last year, saying families should be in control of how and where students receive their education.
- But Democrats have said the law will further financial and cultural inequities in schools as richer families leave for the suburbs.
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