We thank the Des Moines Public School District for showing great support of Cowles, the only public Montessori in the state of Iowa.  Cowles is unique with Montessori learning methods used within the classroom while aligning with the Des Moines Public School essential curriculum for each grade level.

Kindergarten and above

Tuition is free as Cowles is a public school.

School Hours

8:30 am – 3:25 pm  Every Wednesday is early dismissal  at 1:55

The building is open at 8:15 am during the school week.

Cowles follows the Des Moines Public School Calendar for holidays, breaks, and early dismissal days.


If you would like to be considered for admission to Cowles, please  complete the Within-District Transfer Application located at:

and submit the application to the Enrollment Office located at 1301 2nd Avenue, Des Moines, IA  50314.  Applications are accepted from July 1 through March 1 the year before enrollment.  The March 1 deadline is extended until September 1 for any student entering preschool or kindergarten.  For example, students seeking enrollment for the 2016-2017 school year may apply between July 1, 2015 through March 1, 2016.  Students entering preschool or kindergarten have until September 1, 2016 to apply.

Enrollment is subject to all the District’s Within District Transfer Policies.  For any questions regarding this process, please contact the district enrollment office at 242-7353.

Before/After School Care

Pre-K students- 3 and 4 year olds:

Pax Place-  Tuition information pending board approval.

Kindergarten through Eighth Grade:

Metro Kids-  Please Refer to the Metro Kids tab on the web site for more information


Classrooms are multi-age

Pre-K-  Ages 3, 4, 5;

Lower- 1st-3rd grade

Upper- 4th-6th grade

Middle School 7th-8th grade