Lisa Irey Named Director of Technology for DMPS

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Lisa Irey is the Director of Technology for Des Moines Public Schools.

Technology is a critical part of nearly every aspect of life, including – and perhaps especially – education. From making sure students and staff have devices to connecting everyone to networks and online resources, technology is a linchpin to both the learning that takes place in classrooms and at home as well as the managing of a school district.

And when challenges arise – such as the COVID-19 pandemic – the role of technology becomes even more critical in keeping people connected. During part of that time, Lisa Irey was at the helm of the district’s technology efforts, although with “interim” as a part of the title. Now, interim has been dropped and they are officially the Director of Technology for Des Moines Public Schools.

“I am not here to do what Technology has always done,” noted Irey. “I’m here to investigate how we can be the best service provider and thought partner in service to our students, staff, and community members.”

Irey began their career with Wells Fargo, but a passion for teaching and learning along with public service saw them shift to education, teaching business and computer science at different school districts. They started the Microsoft IT Academy at West Des Moines Schools before joining DMPS six years ago. Irey holds a Master of Science degree in Organizational Leadership

Irey’s appointment also marks the first openly trans leader at DMPS. They are a non-binary/trans-masc person, and a member of the OneIowa LGBTQ Leadership Institute. Irey hopes their role as a leader will provide representation for LGBTQ students and staff in the district.

Looking to the months and years ahead, Irey and their team have a long to-do list in keeping DMPS on the front edge of technology services. As they note: “Our mission and vision are aimed at serving as an innovative and strategic partner in student learning.”

Among upcoming projects and priorities are new classroom interactive projectors, upgrading the district’s wireless network, expanding curriculum material produced by the district’s print shop, and working more closely with teaching and learning staff in order to do even more to align technology with educational needs.