Iowa moves up Heritage Foundation education rankings due to ESAs

DES MOINES — A conservative think tank is recognizing Iowa for offering state-funding directly to parents, to cover private school expenses for their children. The Heritage Foundation’s annual Educational Freedom Report Card ranked Iowa 22nd among the states last year, but Iowa jumped to ninth this year after lawmakers established state-funded Education Savings Accounts..

“The number of ESA applications, they exceeded…not only our expectations, but our projections and I truly believe that school choice…will make the most consequential change to our education system in decades not only in Iowa, but across the country,” Governor Kim Reynolds said at an event in Des Moines hosted by the Heritage Foundation.

Nearly 19,000 state-funded Education Savings Accounts were approved for students this fall, but the state has not announced how many of those students successfully enrolled in private schools.