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2020 Legislative Priorities

Release Date: 

December 2, 2019

The Board appreciates the progress the 2019 Legislature made in increasing flexibility in high school graduation requirements. During the second year of this biennium, the Board is committed to continued collaboration with the legislature and our other K-12 partners to implement and refine current state policies to ensure all of Washington’s students graduate prepared for civic engagement, careers, postsecondary education, and lifelong learning. The Board’s 2020 legislative platform builds on the priorities established last year. The Board will also advocate to advance additional initiatives consistent with our 2019-2023 strategic plan. SBE's Legislative Committee is comprised of Members: Patty Wood, Holly Koon, MJ Bolt, Ricardo Sanchez, and Bill S. Kallappa II. 

SBE's Legislative priorities include similar themes to partners, as shared at the November Board Meeting. The word cloud to the right incorporates partner and SBE Legislative priority language. Larger words are mentioned multiple times.

SBE's priorities this session include: 

Educational Equity 
The Board supports legislation targeted to dismantling institutional policies, programs, and practices that contribute to disparate and statistically predictable educational outcomes based on race, ethnicity, socioeconomic background, and other factors. Specifically, the Board supports changes to school funding that are equitable and based on the diverse needs of students and changing societal demands.  In addition, the Board supports increasing access to dual credit and high-quality expanded learning opportunities for historically underserved students. 

School Safety 
Safe schools foster academic achievement and a healthy K-12 system. The Board urges the state to create a state-wide framework for mental health support, social emotional learning, and trauma-informed instructional models in the K-12 system; and to further expand and sustain comprehensive statewide school safety and mental health systems via regional coordination. 

Special Education  
Despite critical investments made in 2019, Special Education funding remains inadequate. The Board urges the Legislature to increase funding for students who have Individualized Education Plans and students qualifying for the Safety Net, and to support inclusionary practices. 

Early Learning 
The Board appreciates the progress made last year and urges the Legislature to continue to expand access to affordable, high-quality early childhood education for all of Washington’s children, particularly children of color and children in poverty, to mitigate opportunity and achievement gaps.

Modest Budget Requests  
The Board has submitted requests to support our website ADA accessibility and local development of credit-bearing High School and Beyond Plan options.  In addition, the Board is advocating for additional resources at ERDC to support cross-agency data analysis and reporting. 

SBE is in the process of hiring a Director of Advocacy and Engagement and will update the blog and other forms of communication as the session begins and progresses. Sign up to receive news about the 2020 session and education-related bills. 

Media Contact: 

Stephanie Davidsmeyer
Communications Manager
(360) 725-6035