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Washington Blog

Vote for an education champion in Tacoma, vote for Andrea Cobb

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When it comes to making decisions about the future of our schools, we must elect local leaders who will keep children front and center in their policy priorities.  That is why we get involved in elections by endorsing strong candidates for the Tacoma School Board.

We endorse education champions who share our desire for bold change, who will make education their top priority, who can work strategically and effectively, and who will work with the community over the long term to improve outcomes for students in Tacoma. 

Eight more nonprofits vie to open a public charter school in Washington State

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Eight nonprofits have submitted a letter of intent to apply to open a public charter school in Washington through the State Charter School Commission.

May 15 is the deadline for these nonprofits to submit their full application. The commission will vote August 13 on which applications to approve.

So, what do these letters of intent reveal? As we've done in the past, let's take a closer look at some of the prospects.

Finally, some grand plans that tackle school levies

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In mid-April, State Superintendent Randy Dorn, followed by Senate and House lawmakers, unveiled their own grand proposals to address the crux of the Supreme Court’s McCleary ruling: boosting funding for basic education in a reliable and sustainable way.

To do so, lawmakers must tackle the challenge of reducing school districts’ reliance on local levies, while shifting the cost burden to the State.

OPSI's Statement on Statewide Testing

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The following is a statement from State Superintendent Randy Dorn on using state testing to help determine if students are on a path to success after high school:

House, Senate budget proposals prioritize education, but don’t address local district spending burden

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In early April, State House and Senate lawmakers passed their respective budget proposals for the 2015-17 biennium. We want to thank our state lawmakers for prioritizing education policies that favor student outcomes and an aligned funding system.

Let’s start with what looks promising in the budget proposals:

TOTAL NEW SPENDING ON MCCLEARY (ESHB 2261/ SHB 2776) FOR THE 2015-17 BIENNIUM

  • House Budget Proposal: $1.4 billion

  • Senate Budget Proposal: $1.3 billion

Standing for Children in Olympia

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The NCLB Waiver bill—is stalled in the House

Stand in the Community

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On Tuesday evening, March 10th the State Board of Education met at Pacific Lutheran University for a Community Forum for a night of conversation with local education champions and parents.  Part of their outreach plan is to move the board meetings around to hear their  concerns about education in Washington State.

Early Start Act Passes and Protect School Funding Update

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Last year, the Washington State Senate brought a bill requiring test-based student growth in teacher evaluations to the Senate floor as the last bill to be voted on before the cut-off for bills from the house of origin—a spot reserved for top priority bills. Many of us were deeply disappointed to see it fail in that floor vote.

Ask your Senator to Support the Early Start Act

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We just got word that the Senate Ways and Means Committee scheduled a hearing for the Early Start Act on Wednesday at 1:30 pm.

Can you call your Senator before 8 pm tonight and ask them to support the Early Start Act? Dial the toll-free hotline at 1-800-562-6000 and ask to speak to your Senator.

Here's what you need to say when you get your Senator on the line:

Legislative Roll Call: More good news

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On Monday, the House Education Committee heard testimony on a bill that threatened to water down Washington’s public charter school law – one of the strongest in the nation.

HB 1971 would have arbitrarily limited the number of public charter schools that could open in a school district with no regard for the size or need of the student body.

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