April 7, 2017 Policy Brief

Key Dates

April 12: Last day for consideration of opposite chamber bills

April 23: Last day of regular session

June 7: Economic Forcast

June 20: Revenue Forcast

June 30: Budget or Continuing Resolution for 2017-2019 must be adopted

July 7: Initiative Filing Deadline


Policy Round Up

Both the House and Senate have passed their respective budget proposals.

SHB 1445, on the Senate floor calendar, creates a new effort to recruit and train bilingual teachers in the state. 

ESHB 1115, on the Senate floor calendar, creates new standards and certification requirements for paraeducators. 


Key Numbers

  • Senate budget increased funding of the Learning Assistance Program, which is less than 5 percent of their proposed $1.8 billion education spending increase. The House has not proposed a funding increase for the Learning Assistance Program.

  • Washington State ranks 41st in the nation in high school graduation rates (U.S. Department of Education).


Social Media Chatter

The Tacoma News Tribune’s @MelissaSantos1 tweeted yesterday that “Inslee says state is required to pay for ‘dinner’ for every child. But others – through local money – can provide ‘dessert.’ @waleg #waedu.”

@glossolaliac replied: “wasn’t the fact that levies are unconstitutional kinda the crux of the decision?”

@MelissaSantos1 followed up with a question for @GovInslee: “The use of local levies for basic education yes. I asked how you prevent levies from paying for those state responsibilities…@GovInslee: You prevent local $$ from going to state costs by paying for those obligations, i.e. the ‘dinner tab’ #waleg #waedu.”

What We're Reading

An Education Week State Highlight Report – Education Week
“…states are graded based on achievement gaps between low-income students and their more affluent peers. Washington’s grade on those poverty-gap measures stands at a C. Nationally, it ranks 50th in this area.”

Gifted programs across Washington leave out black and Latino students — but Federal Way is one model for change – Seattle Times
“The rate of black students doing advanced coursework has nearly doubled, to 34 percent, and Federal Way now has better participation among minority and low-income children in gifted programs than any other large, diverse district in the state.”

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