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.


Purchase Classroom Supplies and Equipment at the Store in myPLTW
In order to access the Store, you just need a myPLTW account. All myPLTW user roles – Program Coordinator, Site Coordinator, Teacher, and General User – have access to the Store in myPLTW. We established the General User role so that school and district staff who support PLTW program operations, such as purchasing agents, IT staff, and grant managers, can access features like the Store in myPLTW.

Reminder: Launch Lead Teacher Update Training
All Launch Lead Teachers credentialed before June 1, 2017 are required to take part in an online update training. This online training provides all the tools and support they need to train and prepare other teachers to facilitate PLTW Launch in the classrooms.

Ensuring Curriculum Access, in All Situations
We design and develop PLTW courses with accessibility for all students in mind. We have also created specific tools and resources to help you support student access in the event of IEP/504 plan requirements, technology barriers (e.g., a student loses a device), purposes of translation (e.g., translations to braille), or some other classroom situation in which accessing the digital version is not possible or feasible.

How to Roster Your Students
To grant students access to Courses and their PLTW curriculum, you’ll need to roster them prior to, or at the start of, the school year. For more information on how to roster students for the 2017-18 school year, read the Student Roster Instructions and use the Student Roster Template to prepare your file.

Reminder: Retrieve Materials and Resources from LMS by Sep. 30
To support teachers' transition to Courses, the new way to access PLTW curriculum, teachers may continue to access the PLTW Learning Management System (LMS) until Sept. 30, 2017, to retrieve or export any materials or resources they wish to save for future use or reference. After Sept. 30, teachers will no longer have access to the PLTW LMS, including Professional Learning Communities (PLCs).

To learn more about how to export materials from the LMS, visit the Getting Ready for the New School Year with PLTW FAQ guide and select "Transitioning from the Current PLCs" and "Transitioning from the PLTW LMS."

Getting Ready for the School Year
Have you checked out the new tools and features available in myPLTW?

Software: Downloading, Installing, Troubleshooting
If you need assistance downloading, installing, or troubleshooting software, please visit our Software page.

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