Sports, Activities Suspended Over Safe Start to School Year

Des Moines Public Schools was informed today by the Iowa High School Athletic Association and the Iowa Girls’ High School Athletic Union, acting on direction from the Iowa Department of Education, that in-person sports and activities at DMPS are suspended due to beginning the school year primarily through virtual learning.

The announcement does not affect any competitions or practices until next Tuesday, September 8, the first day of classes at DMPS. That includes tomorrow night’s football games, which will be played as scheduled. DMPS high schools are notifying opponents on next week’s schedule of this matter and will work to reschedule events pending the outcome of legal proceedings.

DMPS is taking legal action against the State, challenging their attempt to override the local control and decision-making authority provided to school districts under Iowa law. A hearing is set for tomorrow morning in Polk County District Court on the request by DMPS for an injunction to put a hold on the State’s rejection of its plan to begin the school year through primarily virtual learning.

“I am hopeful for a successful outcome to our legal challenge,” said Thomas Ahart. Superintendent of Des Moines Public Schools. “If the Court grants our request for an injunction, then DMPS is not out of compliance with any State guidelines about returning to school and therefore no credible reason exists to stop our students from resuming their participation in sports and activities.”