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Mandatory Blood Lead Testing

A 2008 Iowa law requires that each child entering kindergarten must have received at least one blood lead test.  Every fall the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) requests a list of students enrolled in kindergarten from school officials.  This list of students is compared with the IDPH database of blood lead test results.  IDPH provides the schools with the names of children who, according to the database, have not received a blood lead test. The schools then send a note to the parents of each child without a blood lead test result in the database. The Iowa Code states no kindergartner will be kept out of school if they did not have a blood lead test. 

The following documents provide additional information and instruction for school officials. 

Video: School Process on Kindergarteners Blood Lead Testing

Summary of the school-lead data matching from school years 2016 to 2022:

Information on Mandatory Blood Lead Testing during Kindergarten Enrollment

The parent information sheet provides information about the importance of testing for lead and the steps parents need to follow to complete this requirement before the start of the new school year. 

Exemptions to Mandatory Blood Lead Testing

Memorandum to Inform Parents About Lead Results

The following memorandums can be used by school nurses to send to parents or guardians notifying them their child may not have received a blood lead test according to the Health Department's records.

Will be available mid Dec.:

  • English 
  • Spanish 
  • Arabic 
  • French 
  • Laotian 
  • Swahili 

Learn how mandatory blood lead testing is a matter of health equity for children: