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Learning Beyond the Bell Grants

DES MOINES — The Iowa Department of Education today awarded nearly $6 million in competitive grants to 67 Iowa schools to create, expand and sustain high-quality before-and-after school programs that support families and advance student achievement in partnership with community organizations.

“By expanding access to before- and after-school programs grounded in evidence-based best practices, Learning Beyond the Bell grants will support improved student achievement, strong attendance, and positive behaviors,” said Iowa Department of Education Director McKenzie Snow. “The Department is leveraging additional federal funds to increase support for Learning Beyond the Bell grants from $3.5 million to nearly $6 million, encouraged by the tremendous response of schools and community organizations to this opportunity. We commend all of the awardees for their leadership in realizing our shared vision to bridge and close learning gaps through engaging students in dynamic learning and supporting working families beyond the school day.”

The Department awarded each of the following schools a Learning Beyond the Bell grant:

  • Adair-Casey Community School District

  • Adair-Casey Elementary School

  • Alta-Aurelia Community School District

  • Alta Elementary School

  • Ames Community School District

  • Sawyer Elementary School

  • Edwards Elementary School

  • Fellows Elementary School

  • Meeker Elementary School

  • Kate Mitchell Elementary School

  • Calamus-Wheatland Community School District

  • Calamus Wheatland Elementary School 

  • Camanche Community School District

  • Camanche Elementary School

  • Cedar Rapids Community School District

  • Metro High School

  • Kenwood Leadership Academy

  • Central Community School District    

  • Central Elementary School

  • Clarke Community School District

  • Clarke Community Elementary School

  • Clay Central-Everly Community School District

  • Clay Central-Everly Elementary School

  • Clayton Ridge Community School District

  • Clayton Ridge High School

  • Clinton Community School District

  • Bluff Elementary School

  • Jefferson Elementary School

  • Colfax-Mingo Community School District

  • Colfax-Mingo Jr./Sr. High School

  • Danville Community School District

  • Danville Elementary School

  • Des Moines Public Schools

  • Capitol View Elementary School

  • East High School

  • Goodrell Middle School

  • McCombs Middle School

  • Hoover High School

  • Roosevelt High School

  • Diagonal Community School District

  • Diagonal Elementary School

  • Dubuque Community School District

  • Audubon Elementary School

  • Lincoln Elementary School

  • Marshall Elementary School

  • East Union Community School District

  • East Union Early Childhood Center

  • Eddyville-Blakesburg Community School District

  • Blakesburg Elementary School

  • Emmetsburg Community School District

  • West Elementary School

  • Fort Dodge Community School District

  • Butler Elementary School

  • Grinnell-Newburg Community School District

  • Grinnell Middle School

  • Guthrie Center Community School District

  • Guthrie Center Elementary School

  • Hamburg Community School District

  • Marnie Simons Elementary/Middle School

  • Howard-Winneshiek Community School District

  • Crestwood High School

  • Iowa City Community School District

  • Alexander Elementary School

  • Iowa School For the Deaf

  • Kingsley-Pierson Community School District

  • Kingsley Elementary School

  • Maquoketa Community School District

  • Briggs Elementary School

  • Mason City Community School District

  • John Adams Middle School

  • Mediapolis Community School District

  • Mediapolis Elementary School

  • Muscatine Community School District

  • Jefferson Elementary School

  • Nodaway Valley Community School District

  • Nodaway Valley Elementary School

  • Oelwein Community School District

  • Wings Park Elementary School

  • Oelwein Middle School

  • Olin Consolidated Community School District

  • Olin Elementary School

  • Osage Community School District

  • Osage High School

  • Oskaloosa Community School District

  • Oskaloosa Middle School

  • Ottumwa Community School District

  • Gateway High School

  • Evans Middle School

  • Liberty Elementary School

  • Wilson Elementary School

  • Fahrney Elementary School

  • Ottumwa High School

  • Red Oak Community School District

  • Inman Elementary School

  • Riverside Community School District

  • Oakland Elementary School

  • Sibley-Ocheyedan Community School District

  • Sibley-Ocheyedan Elementary School

  • Sioux City Community School District

  • Leeds Elementary School

  • Irving Dual Language Elementary School

  • South Tama County Community School District

  • South Tama County Elementary School

  • South Tama County Middle School

  • St. Ansgar Community School District

  • St. Ansgar Elementary School

  • West Central Community School District

  • West Central PK-8 School

  • West Des Moines Community School District

  • Crestview School of Inquiry

  • Woodbine Community School District

  • Woodbine Elementary School

In determining awards, competitive district applicants demonstrated clear, sustainable plans for offering before- and after-school programming that incorporated evidence-based instruction in identified academic focus areas, based on the needs of the students being served. Implementation plans also addressed daily attendance, transportation to and from the program, high-quality staffing and strong community partnerships. Funding awards prioritized schools serving students most in need based on their identification for additional support and improvement through federal and state accountability systems. 

Award amounts were determined based on alignment with grant objectives and the expenditures outlined in each applicant’s budget proposal, up to a maximum of $200,000 per school. Allowable uses of funds include costs related to staffing, evidence-based interventions in math and/or reading, tutoring and other activities to advance student achievement, transportation and snacks and meals that meet federal nutrition guidelines.

Grants will be distributed for district implementation this spring, summer and into the 2024-25 school year, following a 10-business day appeal period as required by state law. 

More information about the Learning Beyond the Bell Grant is available on the Iowa Department of Education’s website.

Funds for the Learning Beyond the Bell grant are provided through the Iowa Department of Education’s portion from the American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (APR ESSER) Fund to address state-level education priorities. 

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