Iowa will pick Odyessy to administer its educational savings accounts program

Odyssey, a New York-based education vendor, administers two other states’ ESA programs. The state will begin contract negotiations with the company for the total cost of the program’s administration.


Margaret Kispert/The Register / USA TODAY NETWORK

Gov. Kim Reynolds high fives House Speaker Pro Tempore John H. Wills, R-District 10 before she signs the House File 68 in the rotunda of the Iowa State Capitol building on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023.

Liam Halawith , Politics Editor

A New York-based company that manages two other states’ educational savings accounts programs was selected to run Iowa’s recently enacted program, according to a news release from the governor’s office on Tuesday. 

The state is finalizing contract negotiations with Odyssey, an education company specializing in administering ESA programs, according to the release.

Odyssey will administer the enrollment, distribution, and reporting on all educational savings accounts funds, according to the governor’s office. 

Gov. Kim Reynolds signed educational savings accounts into law on Jan. 24 just two weeks after she introduced the drafted legislation during her Condition of the state address. 

The program will cost the state roughly $315 million annually for the accounts alone, not including the administrative cost that has not been disclosed by the governor’s office because of ongoing negotiations. The law provides $7,600 annual scholarships to Iowa students that attend private schools without income restrictions once the program is fully implemented. 

The program will begin this fall at the start of the 2023-24 school year.