Basic Education Compliance
The State Board of Education (SBE) collects compliance information annually online (through Igrants, form package 600) from each school district in Washington State.
Reporting on this form gives assurance to the Board that school districts are in compliance with the minimum requirements of the Basic Education Act, as well as related requirements determined by the SBE.
The following statutory requirements must be reported to the SBE:
- Kindergarten Minimum 180-day School Year (RCW 28A.150.220 / RCW 28A.150.203) – The Kindergarten program consists of no less than 180 half days of instruction or equivalent (450 hours) per school year.
- Kindergarten Total Instructional Hour Offering (RCW 28A.150.220 / RCW 28A.150.205 / WAC 180-16-200) - The district makes available to students enrolled in Kindergarten at least a total instructional offering of 450 hours.
- Grades 1-12 Minimum 180-Day School Year (RCW 28A.150.220 / RCW 28A.150.203) - The school year is accessible to all legally eligible students and consists of at least 180 school days for students grades 1-12, inclusive of any 180-day waivers granted by the State Board of Education.
- Grades 1-12 Total Instructional Hour Offering (RCW 28A.150.220 / RCW 28A.150.205 / WAC 180-16-200) - The district makes available to students enrolled in grades 1-12 at least a district-wide, annual average of 1,000 hours.
- State High School Graduation Minimum Requirements (RCW 28A.150.220 / RCW 28A.230.090 / WAC 180-51-066) All subject areas are aligned with the state’s high school learning standards and essential academic learning requirements, at a minimum meet grades 9-10 grade level expectations. District high schools meet or exceed all state minimum graduation requirements.
|What changes were made to the requirement for minimum instructional hours for grades one through twelve by the legislature for the 2014-15 school year?
RCW 28A.150.220(2)(a) provides “For students enrolled in grades one through twelve, at least a district-wide annual average of one thousand hours, which shall be increased to at least one thousand eighty instructional hours for students enrolled in each of grades seven through twelve and at least one thousand instructional hours for students in each of grades one through six according to an implementation schedule adopted by the legislature, but not before the 2014-15 school year.”
The 2013-15 operating budget act (Chapter 4, Laws 2013, 2nd Spec. Sess.) implements this requirement. The budget act provides that “School districts shall implement the increased instructional hours for the instructional program of basic education required under the provisions of RCW 28A.150.220(2)(a) beginning with the 2014-15 school year, which enhancement is within the program of basic education.”
For the next school year, therefore, the basic education program requirement for minimum instructional hours in grades 1 through 12 is revised as follows.
|District-wide annual average 1,000 hours in grades 1-12
||1,000 hours in each of grades 1-6
1,080 hours in each of grades 7-12
|What is included in instructional hours? Does lunch, recess, passing time, or conferences count toward the 1,000 instructional hours?
||RCW 28A.150.205 defines instructional hours:
'Instructional hours' means those hours students are provided the opportunity to engage in educational activity planned by and under the direction of school district staff, as directed by the administration and board of directors of the district, inclusive of intermissions for class changes, recess, and teacher/parent-guardian conferences that are planned and scheduled by the district for the purpose of discussing students' educational needs or progress, and exclusive of time actually spent for meals.
|What is the definition of a school day?
RCW 28A.150.203 defines a school day:
'School day' means each day of the school year on which pupils enrolled in the common schools of a school district are engaged in academic and career and technical instruction planned by and under the direction of the school.
A full-day parent-teacher conference is not considered a school day toward the required 180 days because it is implicit in the statute that all pupils must be engaged in academic and career and technical instruction. A late start, early release, or half-day used for parent-teacher conferences is considered a school day toward the required 180 days. Districts planning full-day parent teacher conferences within a 180-day school year must apply for a waiver to be in compliance with the Basic Education Act.
For questions or if your school district is out of compliance with any of the requirements, please contact:
Jack Archer (email@example.com)
Director of Basic Education Oversight
Phone: (360) 725-6035