Iowa's PLTW Program History

PLTW Growth

From its early beginnings in up-state New York, Project Lead the Way has swept across the country in just 15 years. PLTW began in Iowa in 2005, with 10 schools implementing programs – seven high schools and three middle schools. In eight short years, Iowa climbed to the 11th largest PLTW affiliate in the country and currently has 196 total schools and has impacted thousands of students in the state!

PLTW Iowa Timeline












Computer Science and Software Engineering (CSE) will be a new course in the Pathway To Engineering (PTE) program. Content will be piloted during the 2013-14 school year with availability to the network for the 2014-15 school year. If you would like to participate in course development or be part of the pilot, email

Medical Detectives (MD)  The eighth unit for Gateway To Technology will capture student interest in topics associated with PLTW's Biomedical Sciences (BMS) program. The unit is being developed and will be field tested in spring 2013. Core training opportunities will be available in the summer of 2013 in order to implement the unit for the 2013-14 school year. If you would like to provide input or be part of the pilot, email

A plan to create STEM learning experiences for elementary students is also underway!

PLTW for the Future

The PLTW curriculum is available to students by virtue of educating teachers in this hands-on curriculum. The hands-on approach is the single most important element responsible for the great success of PLTW. The U.S. will need scientists and engineers in its effort to compete in a global economy.  Today, PLTW is endorsed by national associations, belongs to educational partnerships, can rely on strong government relationships and employs its own marketing and communications group to produce its educational materials.


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