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.


Legal analysis: Constitutional implications of Washington Supreme Court's remedy in McCleary vs. State

April 2, 2014 in Publications


Washington Policy Center recently asked Judge Phil Talmadge to review the state supreme court’s January 2012 decision in McCleary v. State of Washington. Judge Talmadge served as a supreme court justice from 1995 to 2001 and was a state senator representing West Seattle from 1979 to 1995.

Local levies help teachers get pay raises

March 20, 2014 in Publications

Executives at Washington’s public teachers union (the WEA) announced recently that gaining access to greater pay increases was their primary lobbying goal for 2014, not raising student test scores, closing the achievement gap or improving low graduation rates.

Economic model shows Superintendent Dorn’s proposed tax increases would cost 18,500 jobs

March 3, 2014 in Publications

Key Findings

Does increasing public school spending improve learning outcomes for children?

February 11, 2014 in Publications

Key Findings

  • Public school spending between 1990 and 2013 increased by 28%, adjusted for inflation, while graduation rates and academic outcomes remained flat.
  • Public school graduation rate in 1990 was 76%, in 2013 it was 77%.
  • Trend data on academic outcomes for Washington state public school students has remained largely unchanged for years.

Research question: Does more education spending improve outcomes for students?

Parents voice support for opening charter schools

February 3, 2014 in Publications


Overview of Public School Teacher Pay and Benefits - Increases in teacher pay from 2006-2013

January 27, 2014 in Publications

Executives at Washington’s public education teachers’ union (WEA) recently announced that their top lobbying goal for the 2014 legislative session is to increase pay for their members. To support their case, the WEA’s “Our Voice” newsletter states,

“Educators have gone six straight years without a COLA.”

Public Education Dollars Diverted to Pay Union Executive Salaries

July 30, 2013 in Publications

New research by Washington Policy Center shows public education funds are being diverted from school budgets to pay the salaries and benefits of executives at private labor unions. Each year school districts pay full salaries and benefits of public employees who leave school classrooms for a time to work full-time for private labor unions.  While working as union executives the employees perform no teaching or other educational duties for the school district.      

Officials Use Race to Help Set Academic Achievement Goals

May 22, 2013 in Publications

Key Findings