Demographics: Iowa’s immigrant children: In 1990 only 2.4 percent of Iowa kids (17,000) were from immigrant families – by 2018 that number jumped to 12 percent (84,000).

Multigenerational households: 2011 U.S. Census Survey: 2.6 percent of Iowa’s 750,000 households are multigenerational households and of those include three generations (parent, child, grandchild, ie.) and the majority identify as Hispanic (map broken down by county is on page 4 in the linked census survey).

Iowa school districts: According to the Iowa Department of Education there are 330 school districts throughout the state with over 480,000 students and over 37,000 teachers. Districts with meatpacking plants have higher enrollment of Hispanic, Black and mixed race children. These populations are at higher risk of getting coronavirus.

Texas fears of retribution: A 2019 CDC study found a tuberculosis outbreak in an Amarillo, Texas plant was driven in part due to fear of employer retribution. Investigators also reported most workers at the plant were foriegn born; and concluded plant workers comparatively low socio-economic status, limited access to healthcare and language barriers also played “significant roles” in tuberculosis transmission.

Broadband: Rural schools face a daunting task. School consolidations mean larger and larger school districts without respect for county lines. The lack of reliable fixed broadband poses another hurdle for online learning options, and the dearth of licensed childcare options throughout the state means schools are expected to pick up the slack.

Child care: Over half of the country’s population lives in a so-called childcare desert and nearly one quarter of Iowans are among them. Lack of childcare for parents in the state figured largely in Gov. Kim Reynolds mandate for at least 50% in-person learning. “Broadband and child care issues are partially why we want kids in the classroom and of course do it safely. Return to learn emphasizes in person learning but allows for school districts to move online if they need to, while also giving parents the ultimate decision of if they want to send their child to school or not,” Pat Garrett, Gov. Kim Reynolds’ communications director told IowaWatch.

RELATED: Iowa schools near meatpacking plants
lack extra guidance on virus

Type of work:

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *