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School Districts Across Iowa Grapple With COVID-19 Surge

Markus Winkler
COVID-19 cases continue to spike across Iowa, raising concerns for many educators and families.

The test positivity rate for COVID-19 is at or above 15 percent in at least 95 of Iowa’s 99 counties. For many districts, this means reevaluating in-person learning and petitioning the state for a possible waiver to state-mandated, in-class instruction.

On this episode of River to River, a look at the biggest news stories of the week. Host Ben Kieffer is joined by Grant Gerlock for a look at how school districts are handing dramatic spikes in COVID-19 cases, and Erin Jordan, investigative report with The Gazette joins the program to discuss why some Iowans are concerned about how the state is recording 14-day positivity rates relating to the pandemic.


  • Grant Gerlock, Iowa Public Radio Central Iowa reporter
  • Erin Jordan, investigative reporter with The Gazette
  • Katie Peikes, Iowa Public Radio Western Iowa reporter
  • Pete Damiano, Bernstein professor and Director of the Public Policy Center at the University of Iowa
  • Isha Kalia, recent high school graduate, Marion
  • Tony Dehner, Iowa Public Radio Studio One host


Ben Kieffer is the host of IPR's River to River
Katelyn Harrop is a producer for IPR's River to River and Talk of Iowa