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Washington Blog

Legislative Update: Week 2


Week two of legislative session just wrapped up, and some of our priority bills dedicated to improving student learning are getting a hearing.  We’ll keep you updated with an email every Friday – so please sign up for our email list and share this to any friends who are interested in education.

Our Policy Priorities

Stand for Children has three main policy priorities this session. 

  • Achievement: Support programs that close the achievement gap and increase students’ depth of understanding.
  • Accountability: Hold schools and districts accountable for wise spending and student achievement.
  • Funding: Provide adequate funding for Basic Education and education reforms.

Education Bills in Committee - Jan 30 & Feb 1

Several of our priority bills will be heard in the Senate Early Learning & K-12 Education Committee on Wednesday, January 30th and Friday, February 1st. Please let me know if you are interested in coming to Olympia to testify on these topics.

Academic Acceleration SB 5243 (Litzow)

Wednesday, January 30, 1:30-3:30, in Cherberg Building, Senate Hearing Room 1

Establishing policies to support academic acceleration for high school students

Academic Acceleration helps close the achievement gap and make college real for more students by automatically enrolling any high school student who is qualified into college prep Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) classes. In Federal Way Public Schools, the number of students of color taking advanced classes increased by 76% in one year after implementing this policy. Every student in Washington should have this springboard to college. Rep. Pettigrew plans to introduce a House version.

Renewal District (Draft)

Wednesday, January 30, 1:30-3:30pm, in Cherberg Building, Senate Hearing Room 1

Creating the state superintendent school district

Despite local efforts to improve schools that are struggling to raise student achievement, some schools aren’t making progress. This bill allows the state to oversee school efforts to improve -- bringing in leadership, innovation, and resources. Rep. Pettigrew plans to introduce a similar House bill.

Grading Schools (A-F) on Performance SB 5328 (Litzow)

Wednesday, January 30, 1:30-3:30pm, in Cherberg Building, Senate Hearing Room 1

Creating a school-grading program that relies on the accountability index

Easy to understand and transparent information on how well students are learning in local schools strengthens accountability and rebuilds trust and confidence. This bill provides parents and communities with clear information about how schools are doing by giving schools a letter grade (A-F) based on their performance, just like we do with students. Rep. Dahlquist plans to introduce a similar House bill.

3rd Grade Reading SB 5237 (Dammeier)

Wednesday, January 30, 1:30-3:30pm, in Cherberg Building, Senate Hearing Room 1

Establishing accountability for student performance in third grade

When students are reading by third grade, their chances of academic success skyrocket. This bill offers support for students who are struggling with reading in order to make sure all students are reading by third grade. Rep. Dahlquist has introduced a House version.

Mutual Consent for Teacher Assignments SB 5242 (Litzow)

Friday, February 1, 8-10am, in Cherberg Building, Senate Hearing Room 1

Requiring policies regarding assignment of certificated instructional staff

This bill requires mutual agreement between a principal and teacher before the teacher is assigned to a specific school. Stand has been a long-term supporter of a mutual consent policy - let’s get it done this year. Rep. Pettigrew plans to introduce a similar House bill.

Please note: Legislation is a process and we are working with legislators on all of these bills to make sure the language is right and the policy is well designed to get better results for kids.

Contact Your Legislators

Legislators want to hear from constituents like you. You can find your legislators’ contact information using the “Find your District” tab at

When talking to legislators, you are most effective if you:

  • Keep it short and simple
  • Ask for what you want up front and refer to a specific bill number. For example, “please support SB 5243”
  • Explain briefly why the issue matters to you personally or to your children’s future.

Mark your calendars now and be sure to join us for our Stand Up for Kids Lobby Day, Tuesday, April 2!

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