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State supplemental aid for Iowa schools will grow by 2.4% for the 2021-2022 school year under a bill passed by the House and the Senate.

The House passed its version of the school funding bill Feb. 11. The Senate, which had approved a 2.2% increase on Feb. 9, voted Wednesday in favor of the House bill, passing it 31-18. Senate File 269 will be sent to Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds to be signed into law.  

The bill will increase state aid to schools from the general fund by $36.5 million, according to a fiscal report from the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency.

The final bill does not include any additional funding for COVID-19-related expenses.

An initial Senate school funding proposal included a provision for an additional $30 million to Iowa schools that had complied with the state’s reopening orders in 2020. That would mean, in effect, every school district except Des Moines Public Schools. That section was struck from the bill which passed Wednesday.

Legislators are likely to consider additional bills to allocate more money to schools based on COVID-19 response. 

Another education bill likely on the way: preschool funding. Sen. Sarah Trone-Garriott, D-Windsor Heights, proposed an amendment to the Senate’s school funding bill which would allow schools to use old enrollment figures to predict enrollment for the 2021-2022 school year. 

Reporting provided by the Iowa Capitol Dispatch. 

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