Education

WPC's Center for Education conducts objective research and makes practical policy recommendations to improve Washington State's ability to carry out its paramount duty to educate every child within its borders.

What's New

New state budget to spend $2.9 billion more on public schools; 19 percent increase is one of largest in state history

July 28, 2015 in Publications

After six months of debate, and convening three Special Sessions, lawmakers in Olympia finally reached agreement on a state budget for 2015-17. The new budget will increase spending on K-12 public schools from the current $15.26 billion to $18.15 billion, an increase of 19 percent. Lawmakers achieved this large rise in spending with the natural increase in current revenues, without imposing new taxes on Washington families and business owners.

2014 Achievement Index

The Washington State Public School Achievement Index rates the quality of more than 2,000 public schools across the state. The Index is based on the State Board of Education's Achievement Index for the school year 2013-14, accessible here.

Lawmakers, in strong response to McCleary ruling, vote historic levels of funding for public schools

July 20, 2015 in Blog

In a recent Facebook post, education policy leader Rep. Chad Magendanz (R-Issaquah) noted that state supreme court justices may soon decide to impose a punishment on him and fellow lawmakers for failing to fund public schools.  He asks readers, “What do you feel might be appropriate sanctions for the Court to impose at this point?”

Vance seeks $5 billion more for schools

July 13, 2015 in Blog

Chris Vance, who works for Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn, has a commentary today at Crosscut on the legislature’s alleged shortcomings in funding public education.  The commentary has bi-partisan roots – Dorn is a Democrat, and Vance is a former Republican state party chairman.

$2 billion hole blown in brand new 2015-17 budget

July 1, 2015 in Blog

Around 11:30 p.m. last night (30 minutes before a government shutdown) Governor Inslee signed the state's 2015-17 budget. Though the new budget is only a few hours old, there is already a $2 billion cloud hanging over it.

Legislature approves budget/transportation package; averts government shutdown but work still to be done for budget to balance

July 1, 2015 in Blog

With just hours to spare before a partial state government shutdown, the legislature overwhelmingly adopted the state’s 2015-17 budget. By a vote of 38-10 in the Senate and 90-8 in the House, lawmakers approved a $38.2 billion biennial budget ($79 billion all funds). This represents a 13% increase in spending from the 2013-15 budget.