Charles City teacher dies after contracting COVID-19


Charles City Community Schools is saddened to receive news this weekend of the death of a longtime member of our family, Charles City High School teacher Darla Arends. Ms. Arends was diagnosed with COVID-19 in September and died on Friday, November 6, 2020. In her 25 years at Charles City High School, Ms. Arends touched the lives of many students, parents, and staff as a special education teacher. Her reach went well beyond her classroom and students, serving as a mentor for her Charles City Family. She is a beloved and valuable member of our family, and she will be deeply missed. When asked why she was a teacher, she responded, “to help students become themselves.”

Darla Arends

Visitation is Tuesday, November, 10 from 5 P.M. – 7 P.M. at the Fredregill Family Funeral Home in Zearing, IA. Funeral services are Wednesday, November 11 at 2:30 P.M. at the Zearing Christian Church. 

Students and staff will react in different ways. We should expect a variety of emotions and behaviors. What we need right now is for students, parents, and the community to be supportive of those who are directly impacted by Ms. Arends’ death. 

Additional support for our school family will be available on Monday during the professional development day. Student counseling support services will be available on Tuesday when students return to school. If you would like your child to visit with a counselor, please call the school office at 641-257-6510 or email Given the current limitations on face-to-face contact, the Charles City Community Schools will also offer telehealth support via teleconferencing. 

We know that you will join us in our concern, support, and sympathy for those involved in and affected by this incident.