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ERIC Number: ED537784
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Jan
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Is Iowa Educationally Competitive? Children and Iowa's Economic Future. Iowa Kids Count Special Report
Bruner, Charles; Crawford, Michael
Child and Family Policy Center
In 1991, the Child and Family Policy Center (CFPC) titled its first Iowa Kids Count Data Book "World-Class Futures." That year, Iowa ranked eighth among states in the national Kids Count Data Book, and the report warned against complacence. "World-Class Futures" drew comparisons between Iowa's child outcomes and those for some of America's major trading partners and competitors--Canada, Great Britain, France, and Japan--to show that Iowa should not rest on its laurels if it wanted to compete, and excel, in an increasingly international economy. "World-Class Futures" itself was a reference to a Gubernatorial report, "World Class Schools," that set out an agenda to make Iowa's school system a model for the nation. In his last term in office (1994-98), Governor Terry Branstad focused upon significant education reforms and investments designed to be part of his legacy. His successor, Governor Tom Vilsack, followed this up with additional education initiatives to make Iowa's educational system more competitive with other states, including additional funding for teacher salaries and establishing a goal that 90 percent of all high-school students pursue post-secondary education. In his first term in office, Governor Chet Culver has initiated additional actions to bring Iowa teacher salaries up to the national average and established Preschool for All, an early-childhood program designed to make voluntary preschool available to all Iowa four-year-olds. With such attention from Iowa's last three governors on education reform and excellence, one might assume that Iowa's education system would have moved forward over the last 20 years, both in its own right and in comparison with other states. Two 2006 Iowa Fiscal Partnership (IFP) reports, however, provided information that has challenged this assumption and pointed to the need for Iowa lawmakers to seriously reassess the status of Iowa's educational system. The 2007 and 2009 data analyzed in this update support ts and show that, despite recent investments, Iowa students are not keeping up with their counterparts in other parts of the world, or in other states. (Contains 7 tables.) [This paper updates two earlier CFPC reports prepared for the Iowa Fiscal Partnership--"No Longer a Leader" and "Securing Iowa's Economic Future."]
Child and Family Policy Center. 505 5th Avenue Suite 404, Des Moines, IA 50309. Tel: 515-280-9027; Fax: 515-244-8997; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Child and Family Policy Center
Identifiers - Location: Iowa; United States
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: National Assessment of Educational Progress