Heartland Area Education Agency (AEA) works in partnership with public and accredited private schools to provide educational services, programs and resources for improving the learning outcomes and well being of all children and youth in central Iowa. Heartland AEA staff members serve children from birth to age 21, families, educators and communities.
Heartland AEA's staff members, 75 percent of whom are licensed educators, aid student achievement in many ways. They teach students; provide direct services to students with special needs; consult with teachers, principals and superintendents; meet with parents; lead school-community meetings; and undertake many other tasks to improve teaching and learning.
Service Since 1975
Heartland AEA has the largest student enrollment (over 139,500) of Iowa's nine area education agencies. AEAs were created by the 1974 Iowa Legislature and opened a year later to ensure efficient, effective and equal educational opportunities for all children.
The Agency is a public entity funded by federal and state aid, legislatively-controlled property tax, grants, course tuition and the sale of educational products. Most of Heartland AEA's services are free, although a nominal fee is charged for services such as printing, graphic design, lamination, some staff development courses and special school district requests.
Chief Administrator: Paula Vincent, Ph.D.
Schools: 53 school districts and 30 accredited non-public schools
Students: Over 140,300 (Heartland AEA also serves youth with special needs from birth to school age)
Teachers & Administrators: 9,940
Counties: Audubon, Boone, Carroll, Dallas, Guthrie, Jasper, Madison, Marion, Polk, Story and Warren
Area: 6,518 square miles
Main Office: Johnston
Branch Office Locations: Adel, Ames, Carroll, Guthrie Center, Indianola, Johnston, Knoxville and Newton
Shelter Care Educational Program Sites: Polk County Juvenile Detention Center (Des Moines), Rosedale Shelter (Ames), Youth Emergency Shelter & Services (Des Moines)
Number of Employees: Approximately 625 full- and part-time – less