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

Income tax: Money for education or a jobs killer?

September 12, 2010 in In the News
Sunday, September 12, 2010

Governor Gregoire agrees that second education bailout is not necessary to preserve teachers' jobs

September 10, 2010 in Blog

Today the Governor issued a press release announcing that Washington state will receive a second federal bailout of $208 million.  The first federal bailout of $757 million has backfilled school district budgets last year and this 2010-11 academic year.

Seattle embraces Innovation Schools

September 7, 2010 in Blog

This past February, at WPC’s Center for Education luncheon, our speaker was principal Rob Stein of Manual High, an Innovation School located in Denver, Colorado.  Seattle school officials were in the audience at this important event in downtown Seattle.

No teachers strike, but School Board says historic education reform will receive no funding

September 2, 2010 in Blog

This afternoon at 4:30, Seattle's teachers will vote on a historic contract with the District.  For the first time since collective bargaining came to public education, the concept of teacher performance will become part of a collective bargaining agreement. Until now, considerations of teacher performance and merit pay have been anathema to union negotiators.

Union leader agrees that federal bailout of $208 million not needed to save teachers' jobs

August 31, 2010 in Blog

In Saturday's Seattle Times, teacher's union president Mary Lindquist says Senator Murray's federal bailout of $208 million is needed, not to protect teachers' jobs, but to protect the jobs of counselors, nurses, bus drivers, janitors and administrative assistants.

Children who can't read or do math OK by Seattle teachers union

August 30, 2010 in Blog

The Seattle Times reports this morning that the Seattle teachers union refuses to allow the district to evaluate teachers in part on student academic growth, measured by test scores. They say evaluating teachers based in part on student test scores is unfair.

Contract talks are at an impasse. Teachers are scheduled to vote on the contract on Thursday, September 2nd.

WPC research and possible Seattle teachers strike

August 27, 2010 in Blog

As kids get ready to go back to school, a controversy is brewing in Seattle Public Schools. The teachers union is poised to reject a pay-for-performance teacher evaluation system sought by Seattle School District Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson. This plan is entirely voluntary, except for new teachers, and would evaluate and reward teachers in part (25% of a teacher's evaluation) for improving student learning.

Westneat calls for putting principals in charge of teacher evaluations

August 25, 2010 in Blog

Check out Danny Westneat's column today.  In the midst of a possible teachers strike, he makes an astute observation about public schools that is consistent with long-standing research data.  Westneat says:

 "In the end a principal should do what managers must do in countless other workplaces: decide who gets promoted and who gets fired. And then take heat."

3,000 Teacher Layoffs and I-1098

August 17, 2010 in Blog

One of the rallying cries for the recent $26 billion federal bailout bill was the need to avoid teacher layoffs. Washingtonians we're told that quick action by Congress would save 3,000 teacher jobs. Here is how prime sponsor of the education spending, Sen. Patty Murray, described her effort:

Seattle Girds for Possible Teachers Strike

August 2, 2010 in Blog

Last week Seattle Schools Superintendent Dr. Marie Goodloe-Johnson told me the District’s collaborative negotiating process with the teachers union (the Seattle Education Association), in place since April, had broken down.  The Seattle School District is in the midst of a lengthy collective bargaining process on a new teacher contract that will determine the personnel costs taxpayers will have to pay in the years ahead.