Return-to-Learn Planning & Implementation

DE Return to Learn Site

The purpose of the Iowa Return-to-learn plan

Return-to-Learn plans are required to be submitted to the Iowa Department of Education (Department) by July 1, 2020. These plans are designed to help districts and nonpublic schools meet the challenges of 2020- 21 by:

  • Ensuring that remote learning options are available for all students;

  • Planning to help students catch-up for the learning they may have missed during school closures;

  • Integrating public health strategies into Iowa’s schools;

  • Enabling schools to move between on-site and remote learning as needed; and

  • Helping the Department and our partners at Iowa’s area education agencies (AEAs) understand how best to support schools.


Unprecedented times require planning, preparing, and implementing teaching and learning in new ways. In an effort to continue to achieve the vision of EVERY STUDENT. EVERY DAY, we need to create plans for the future that will accommodate our "new normal". During the past months, we have provided students with some online activities that were intended to help keep students on track. In the event that we are not able to meet face-to-face at some point in the future, we want to ensure that we are equipped and ready to provide online instruction and assessment for ALL. The Iowa Return-to-Learn plan will include three models of delivery for various scenarios.

Required Continuous Learning (CL)

Required Continuous Learning ensures that academic work is equivalent in effort and rigor to typical classroom work. All students are required to participate, attendance is taken, work is graded, and credit is granted. Typically, instruction is provided through some type of online learning.

Hybrid Learning (H)

This model is a combination of Required Continuous Learning and On-Site Learning Delivery. The methods may be combined by offering some student groups services on-site at different times or choosing which student groups get each delivery method by matching need.

On-Site Learning (OS)

This model provides educational services on- site in traditional brick and mortar settings.

Resources