A Second Century of Excellence in Education

For over 100 years, Des Moines Public Schools has been educating the students of Iowa’s capital city. Today, we are the largest provider of public education in Iowa, with more than 30,000 students and nearly 5,000 teachers and staff at work in more than 60 schools throughout the community.

Des Moines is a vibrant, innovative and diverse city. In fact, Parenting magazine ranked Des Moines #5 on the list of the best cities in the nation to raise a family, in large part due to great schools and learning opportunities.

Those traits are reflected throughout our school district in the breadth of the programs we offer and the constituency we serve. Our students, parents, teachers and staff come from many different backgrounds, all of which contribute to the richness of a DMPS education. The wide range of opportunities in Des Moines meets the academic interests, abilities and goals of every student.

We boast the largest variety of educational programs – many of them nationally renowned – in Iowa. That includes the state’s only International Baccalaureate curriculum and the only public Montessori school. According to the Belin-Blank Center for Gifted Education, our Central Academy’s “record of excellence with Advanced Placement is an honor for the entire state of Iowa,” producing more National AP Scholars in one recent year than 13 entire states! Belin-Blank also lists all five DMPS high schools on its Iowa AP Index. The Downtown School is regarded as a national model. Our Career & Technical Institute at Central Campus delivers training in everything from culinary arts to aviation technology.

Over the last decade a comprehensive and ongoing capital improvements campaign has renovated and updated many of our schools, 57 of which have now earned the Energy Star designation. Our state of the art learning environments are preparing students for their future.

Welcome to our website and thank you for your interest in DMPS, an enriched school district that’s proud of its past and prepared for the future.


The Des Moines Independent Community School District is accredited by the Iowa Department of Education.

Enrollment & Registration

From preschool through high school, our school district is proud to offer the most – and best – educational choices to students and families in Iowa. Please visit our Enrollment & Registration page for information on how to sign up your child to attend Des Moines Public Schools.

History of DMPS

For a more in-depth history of Des Moines Public Schools, be sure to read these two documents (one written at the time of the nation’s Bicentennial and one written for the school district’s centennial):

Educational Equity Statement

It is the policy of the Des Moines Community School District not to illegally discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (for employment), marital status (for programs), sexual orientation, gender identity and socioeconomic status (for programs) in its educational programs and its employment practices. There is a grievance procedure for processing complaints of discrimination. If you believe you have (or your child has) been discriminated against or treated unjustly at school, please contact Carol Wynn-Green, 2100 Fleur Drive, Des Moines, IA 50312; phone: 515-242-7709; email: carol.wynngreen@dmschools.org.

For more about educational equity at DMPS, please click here.