Pre-K–12 Education

Winneshiek County has four school districts:
Decorah Community School District
South Winneshiek Community School District
North Winneshiek Community School District
Turkey Valley Community School District (K-8)

Winneshiek County also offers two private schools:
St. Benedict School in Decorah, Iowa
De Sales School in Ossian, Iowa

Younger children in Winneshiek may attend a number of innovative early childhood programs, including Northeast Iowa Montessori School, Nisse Preschool, a collaborative partner with Decorah Community Schools and other area preschools for the State-wide Voluntary Preschool Program (this program is state-funded), Kinderhaus, an outdoor preschool and kindergarten, and the Northeast Iowa Community College Child Development Center.

Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC)

Winneshiek County is home to Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC), a two-year educational facility with main campuses in Calmar and Peosta. The faculty and staff at NICC is committed to helping each student pursue an education that leads to a meaningful career. They recognize that their students’ success will enable them to contribute to the vitality of their communities.

NICC contributes to the educated and highly skilled workforce available in Winneshiek County by offering a variety of degree programs.

Luther College

Situated on nearly 200 acres in Decorah, Iowa, Luther College is an undergraduate liberal arts college affiliated with the Lutheran Church (ELCA).

Founded in 1861 by Norwegian immigrants, Luther values its heritage, just as it values the diversity of its students, staff, and faculty, who hail from many faith backgrounds and heritages.

Luther is a Phi Beta Kappa institution, an honor belonging to only 10 percent of colleges and universities, and its graduates regularly earn awards, such as Fulbright, Rhodes, Goldwater, and NCAA Postgraduate scholarships.

Almost 25 percent of Luther’s students compete in one or more of the college’s 19 intercollegiate sports, and nearly 1,000 students participate in the school’s six choirs, three bands, three orchestras, two jazz bands, and numerous smaller ensembles.

Luther is Winneshiek County’s leading employer with more than 600 faculty and staff. A number of Luther grads stay in—or return to—the Decorah area and contribute greatly to the economic vibrancy of the county.