Des Moines Public Schools consists of approximately 70 buildings with an average age of 63 years. Even though the district considers its older school buildings a strength, they also have many more needs as they age. Providing a safe and healthy environment is a top district priority.
ADA compliancy is also a top priority, and one of the many expectations moving in a positive direction.
Thankfully, Iowa has the state wide sales tax to help bring our buildings up to the highest level possible. Though those funds are significant, they in no way meet the total needs of every school.
In addition to sales tax revenue, the district also reserves some PPEL (important maintenance funding source) dollars for ADA issues, but that is limited due to the fact we are transferring more general fund expenditures to PPEL because of inadequate funding brought on by unfunded mandates for regular programs and high expectations.
DMPS will continue to create new or improved opportunities for our students every year. Though full accessibility may seem slow because of the great number of older buildings, the district has and is making significant progress, and will continue to make all programs accessible to any student with identified needs.
To download a report on the status of ADA compliancy at DMPS schools, please click here.