Des Moines Public Schools
For more than 100 years, Des Moines Public Schools has provided an outstanding education to the students of our community. Today, our school district is a leader and innovator in public education, offering families some of the best educational choices in Iowa as we become the nation’s model for urban education.
Home to more than 60 schools located in every neighborhood of the community, Des Moines Public Schools provides families with choices to meet the educational needs of students from preschool through college-level courses.
With nearly 33,000 students and more than 5,000 employees, there are a lot of stories to tell about the work and accomplishments that take place each day at Des Moines Public Schools. From news releases and articles to our mobile app and social media, keep in touch with Iowa’s largest provider of public education.
- Office of Superintendent
- Office of Human Resources
- Office of Academics
- Office of Schools
- Business Finance
From teachers and principals to bus drivers and food service workers to financial analysts and technology specialists, Des Moines Public Schools is home to a dedicated team of professionals who all – directly and indirectly – contribute to the education of our students.
What sets DMPS apart? We provide families with more educational choices than any place in Iowa, educate top student scholars who go on to attend leading colleges and universities around the world, and are home to teachers recognized throughout the state and across the country as the best in their field.
- Belief Statement
- Board Governance Policies
- Community Legislative Action Team
- Standing Board Committees
The people of Des Moines elect seven members to serve as their representatives on the School Board. In turn, the Board is responsible for the governance of Iowa’s largest provider of public education. Learn more about your elected School Board members, and access information about past and upcoming meetings.
Each Spring students in grades 3 through 11 will be taking the Iowa Assessments (formerly known as the ITBS or ITED).
Measuring academic achievement with the Iowa Assessments provides information to help our students succeed. The Iowa Assessments make this possible by providing detailed information about achievement in content areas including reading, mathematics, and science.
The Iowa Assessments measure student growth and progress from year to year. In addition, they provide information about students’ academic performance relative to their school, the district, and the nation.
Information gained from the Iowa Assessments helps teachers identify students’ strengths and areas that may need additional emphasis. The assessment data enable sound decision-making and provide a focus for teachers to review and improve their instruction. The results of the assessment will help prepare our students for the next steps on their educational paths.
Parents can help prepare students for the assessment by supporting them at home in striking a healthy, effective balance between homework, extra-curricular interests and activities, nutrition and rest.
Results will arrive in late May. Your student’s scores on the Iowa Assessments can be used to:
- understand how your student performs in key areas such as reading, writing, math, science and social studies
- help identify your student’s relative strengths and limitations in these key areas
- monitor your student’s performance over time
- compare your student’s performance to other students in the nation
- provide information about your student’s proficiency level as defined by the state of Iowa
Your student’s scores are presented in various ways including:
- National Standard Score (NSS) is a score that describes performance on an achievement continuum from Kindergarten through 12th grade. The NSS allows you to monitor your student’s growth and compare performance from year to year. The NSS is also used in Iowa to determine your student’s level of proficiency in reading, mathematics and science.
- National Percentile Rank (NPR) is a score that describes the relative comparison of your student’s performance to other students in the nation who are in the same grade and were tested at the same time of year. An NPR of 80 means that your student’s performance was better than 80% of the students who took the test.
- National Grade Equivalent (NGE) is a score that describes student performance in terms of grade level and month. An NGE of 6.7 means the student’s score is similar to that of a student in the seventh month of grade 6.
After scores are made available in May, you are encouraged to discuss the results on the Iowa Assessments with your student and her/his teachers. We recommend focusing on those scores which seem most different from prior years’ scores, and the scores which seem most different when compared to classroom performance. Together, you can use this information to decide how best to continue your student’s education.