As schools grapple with the decision of whether to offer in person learning or online classes only, the Iowa City school district has decided to delay the start of classes until September 8th. The district is aiming to open their school year 100% online.

The Cedar Rapids Gazette reports that all of the district's school board members voted to delay the start of school at a special meeting earlier this week. School was supposed to start on August 24th. It will now start on September 8th. The district also submitted it's application to the Iowa Department of Education seeking to begin the school year with an off site learning plan. School officials told the Gazette that by extending the school year it would maximize face to face learning between teachers and students. The last day of class under the new plan would be June 11th.

The delayed start to the school year will give officials time to monitor additional coronavirus activity as college students return to the University of Iowa this month as well. They say those students will likely increase community spread in Johnson County. According to the Gazette, the Iowa City district does not meet Governor Reynold's requirement of a 15 to 20 percent 14 day average for positive cases, or 10% student absence from schools.

Officials with the Iowa City school district say if their waiver is denied, delaying the start of the school year will allow them to finalize another return to learn plan.

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