The U.S. Department of Education has approved Iowa's request for a one-year freeze on state targets under the No Child Left Behind Act.
Iowa Education Director Jason Glass says the freeze will give the state time to seek permanent relief from the "unrealistic accountability measures."
Iowa's request followed a decision by the federal government to deny the state a waiver from key provisions.
Sioux City Schools superintendent Dr. Paul Gausman says student assessment needs to be looked at over a full year instead of a "snapshot".
Under the law, all children are required to be at grade level in math and
reading by 2014. Schools that don't accomplish that goal face stiff penalties, including mandates to replace staff.
Dr. Gausman says most of Iowa's schools would be considered at risk in 2014 under the current No Child standards:
The number of schools affected by the freeze isn't known because the state education department is in the midst of a progress report based on tests during the last school year.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.