Iowa City schools to prohibit out-of-state travel for students

Students, parents, and staff in Johnson County asked the Iowa City Community School District to revise and reconsider the new in-state travel policy for attending future events during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Jake Maish

A sign for the Iowa City Community School District is seen outside the district’s administration building on Tuesday, April 28.

Simone Garza, News Reporter

The Iowa City Community School District will prohibit out-of-state student travel for field trips and events for the upcoming school year

“In addition, Student travel for school-sponsored activities and events (including athletics and music) is limited to in-state locations,” the school district’s website said.

The policy is a part of the district’s pandemic health and safety protocols.

Olivia Casebolt, a student at West High School and dance team member said the restrictions could prevent the dance team from competing at nationals.

“I ask you to consider equality throughout all sports and activities within school districts,” Casebolt said. “Personally, I have danced up to 24 hours or more a week in preparation to compete nationally. We have earned that place to compete at the national level this year, so please don’t take that away from us.”

Ruthina Malone, vice president of the school board, said during a meeting on Aug. 10 that the board will continue to research and improve this policy.

“We are going to continue to look at how things fold around us and how other districts are handling things,” Malone said.

She said the policy is not permanent and does need clarification on how the traveling procedures would apply.

According to Johnson County Public Health, 58 percent of children from ages 12-17 have received the COVID-19 vaccine in the county,

Malone said the district has to be clear on what it wants to define in the policy.

“Even though it says it’s a 2021 school year, that doesn’t mean that it’s set in stone and we’re going to be reviewing it, and figuring out what’s best for our community as a whole,” Malone said.