Skills for careers. Knowledge for life.

Des Moines Public Schools provides students in middle and high school with an array of educational choices to gain skills and knowledge in preparation for their next stage in life. In addition, Des Moines is home to the nationally-renowned Career & Technical Institute at Central Campus, providing students with highly technical, college-level courses.

Through our career and tech programs, DMPS equips students with the knowledge and skills necessary for college, career and life.  College and career readiness include three major skill areas; core academic skills, employability skills, and technical, job-specific skills. Students apply these skills to rigorous, authentic learning situations, enabling them to understand real-world applications.

Please follow the links to the right to learn more about the career and technical opportunities for students in middle and high school.


The Des Moines Independent Community School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, 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. The lack of English language skills will not be a barrier to admission and participation in its CTE programs.

The Des Moines Independent Community School District offers career and technical programs in the following service areas: Agriculture, Food, & Natural Resources; Arts, Communication, & Information Systems; Applied Sciences, Technology, Engineering, & Manufacturing; Health Sciences; Human Services; and Business, Finance, Marketing, & Management. Career & Technical Education courses delivered at home high schools have no admissions requirements beyond the prerequisites listed with the course description.

Career & Technical Education courses delivered at Central Campus are open to all qualifying high school students regardless of home district. Criteria for enrollment in Central Campus programming with requests exceeding capacity are as follows: the student expresses strong interest in a career path, is credited as a junior or senior (does not apply to courses designed for sophomores or three-year programs), has met perquisites at their home high school, is on track to graduate, has a strong attendance record, demonstrates strong citizenship skills, and enrollment would increase opportunities for underserved populations. No one indicator is a deciding factor in enrollment. Students not meeting these criteria may work with their counselor and school administrator to seek an exception.

There is a grievance procedure for processing complaints of discrimination. If you have questions or a grievance related to this policy, please contact Susan Tallman, 2100 Fleur Drive, Des Moines, IA 50321; phone: 515-242-7709; email: Complaints can also be directed to the Iowa Civil Rights Commission, 400 E. 14th Street, Des Moines, IA 50319-1004, (515) 281-4121, or Region VII Office for Civil Rights, Citigroup Center 500 W. Madison Street, Suite 1475 Chicago, IL 60661-45.