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Poverty increased in Iowa schools

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Cost of Education photo

More than 40% of Iowa public school students are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch, compared to 27% a decade ago.

That number is at an all-time high for Iowa according to the state’s annual Condition of Education report issued January 31, 2013.

“Poverty is an important barrier to learning,” the report said, “However education is a critical component in breaking this cycle.”

Most Iowa school districts – 96% – offer preschool now.

High school seniors who take the ACT in Iowa score an average of 22.1 on the test, just above the national average of 21.1 points out of a possible 36.  Iowa also has the highest graduation rate in the nation.

The state spent about the same amount per student as last year, spending just under $9,500 per student.

The number of full-time public school teachers remained relatively unchanged over the past 12 years.  The average salary for those teachers increased by about $1,000 in comparison to last year, and Iowa ranks 25th in the nation for teacher pay.  The average full-time public school teacher in Iowa is 41.8 years old.

Read the full report – click here.