We are proud to partner with school choice coalition members including the Iowa Alliance/Advocates For Choice in Education, the Iowa Catholic Conference, Americans For Prosperity – Iowa, Iowans for School Choice, the Tax Education Foundation, Ed Choice, the American Federation for Children, and others in working toward an education environment in Iowa that truly puts students and their families first.
This was a challenging year for everyone involved in the legislative process due to COVID mitigation procedures that were different in each chamber, making interactions a little more interesting. There were also clear differences in direction between the House and Senate on education issues, making this an especially challenging year to lobby school choice and private school policy changes. Although tempting to assign this session a letter grade, we recognize that success and failure are sometimes subjective in public policy. Where we experienced huge victories (like the increase in both the STO and Tuition & Textbook Tax Credits!), we also had some disappointments with Education
Savings Account (ESA) efforts and the passage of some mandates we could not support. Although we spent more time on defense than we
expected this year, we were able to stop some dangerous and troublesome bills as well as advance school choice legislation and grow the ability to raise scholarship funds for low and middle income families.
We applaud the Governor for her willingness to take the school choice conversation to the next level by including ESAs in her Condition of the State Address and in her initial legislation that was passed by the Senate. As we work to balance the public/private school choice landscape in Iowa and ensure ALL ships rise, the Governor and the Senate proved they are willing to champion students over systems and empower parents over institutions. Thank you!