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.

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"How can our school perform better on the School Accountability Index?" asks a terrific teacher

March 21, 2011 in Blog

Last week an elementary school teacher called me.  Her school is in a district close to Olympia. She told me her school ranked as only “Good” on the Public School Accountability Index.  She wanted to know how her school could earn a “Very Good” or “Exemplary” on the Index.

“Have you seen the Index?” I asked.

“No, we are not getting much help from our superintendent,” she replied.

“Would you like me to show you the Index scores for your school?" I said.

“Sure!” said the teacher.

More Money Won't Help Seattle Public Schools

March 15, 2011 in Publications

The Seattle Times published this op-ed on March 16.

As a parent with children in Seattle Public Schools, I've seen firsthand how deeply teachers care about their students. And as foster parents, my wife and I have spent countless hours working with concerned teachers to get troubled kids the services they need. Yet, like most public school parents, what we experience is a plodding, top-heavy district system that doesn't give teachers the support they need.

More money won't help Seattle Public Schools

March 15, 2011 in In the News
The Seattle Times
The Seattle Times
Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Union's "Last Hired, First Fired" Rule Means Younger Teachers are Laid off First

March 15, 2011 in Publications

A bill in Olympia, HB 1609, would end the practice of automatically firing the newest and youngest teachers first when Washington school districts implement layoffs. Under the bill, school administrators would be required to consider teacher performance, not just seniority, before letting a teacher go. The introductory language of the bill lays out its intent: “There is an urgent need to conduct layoffs in a way that retains the most effective teachers.”

Online Learning in Washington State

March 11, 2011 in In the News
Insider Online (Heritage Foundation)
Insider Online (Heritage Foundation)
Thursday, March 10, 2011

State Board of Education tries to stop Washington Policy Center education report

March 9, 2011 in Blog

Tacoma News Tribune's Peter Callaghan reports that the State Board of Education has tried to discredit a Washington Policy Center study in an effort to discourage media coverage of its own report on school performance.