State Rep. Dan Kristiansen, the Republican leader in the state House, joins us to talk about the future of charter school legislation - he says there are enough votes to pass a Senate-approved bill, but the big question is if House leadership will allow it to be heard in committee. Also, he explains why getting more data from local school districts is so important for the final McCleary fix - turns out, some of the numbers legislators were originally given overstated how much state money the districts would need.
We're into week one of session, and are delving into the big issues: Minimum wage and paid sick leave, state revenues, McCleary and charter schools. On McCleary we discuss a possible legislative plan and point out the incredibly complex issues involved - issues that can't be resolved in a supplemental budget year.
*UPDATE* We've just received a copy of the bill - click here to read it.
A bipartisan group of legislators is backing legislation that will allow Washington's public charter schools to stay open. The bill "makes a series of updates which include directing charter school funding to come from the state’s Opportunity Pathways Account, which contains state lottery revenues not restricted to common schools."
The state legislature convenes Jan. 11 for its 2016 session, and we're looking at some of the budget issues confronting lawmakers. Plus we discuss next steps in the McCleary/K-12 funding process, and legislation to keep charter schools open.
This is a short session, which means a "supplemental" budget - legislators make relatively minor changes to the two-year budget they passed last session.
Here are links to some of the topics we cover:
This week we're discussing the Attorney General's request that the state Supreme Court reconsider its ruling that charter schools are unconstitutional, the number of construction jobs staying essentially flat statewide, and a federal grant for Washington to study the feasibility of paid family leave implementation.
In this episode:
InFocus podcast: Rent control, WA wine industry, state revenue & employment reports, and charter schools
It's a real smorgasbord on this week's episode, as we discuss a Seattle City Council committee's attempt to resurrect rent control as a viable option, the economic impact of Washington's wine industry, the latest state revenue forecast and employment report, and research on charter school performance from Stanford University.
In this episode:
Extensive research from Stanford University shows charter schools are of particular benefit to low-income, minority and English-Language-Learner students. But the state Supreme Court's controversial ruling that charter schools are unconstitutional throws their future into doubt.
Even before the state Supreme Court ruled them unconstitutional, charter schools were a topic that engendered heated debate (at least here in Washington; charter schools are perfectly constitutional in 41 other states). Therefore, data, backed up by solid research, provides a welcome relief from the rhetoric.