Twelve Washington school districts have formally announced they’ll apply to become charter school authorizers. Bellevue, Highline, Kent, Tacoma, Spokane and Port Townsend are among the districts seeking the power to approve charter school applications in their regions. Those districts met the State Board of Education's April 1 deadline for notices of intent to apply for authorizer status.
Last November, voters approved Initiative 1240 to establish charter schools in Washington state and today the governor announced who is going to sit on the commission that will review and approve charter schools applications. Ross Reynolds sits down with newly appointed commission member and former Seattle School Board member Steve Sundquist about how the commission will work.
The first members of Washington state’s new Charter School Commission are due to be appointed Wednesday. The commission will be able to approve some of the 40 charter schools allowed under the law voters passed last fall.
The charter school initiative has passed by a narrow margin, according to the Associated Press. The vote stands at 50.8 percent to 49.2 percent. That's a difference of about 44,000 votes. Statewide, 269,000 ballots remain to be counted. The No on 1240 campaign Facebook page says campaign managers won't consider the race over until every vote is counted.
The Supreme Court of Washington ruled earlier this year that the state is not meeting its constitutional duty to fully fund public education. What does a well-funded school system look like? We talk with Diane Ravitch, research professor of education at New York University.
The initiative to allow charter schools in Washington is narrowly passing with 51 percent of the vote. This was the fourth time the state’s voters considered charter schools. Supporters said charters would expand students’ educational options because charters aren’t bound by district or union rules.
This fall, voters in Washington will decide whether to legalize charter schools in the state for the first time. Washington voters have considered charters three times before. But the details of charter school funding, oversight and independence can be confusing. So we took a red pen to claims by supporters and opponents of Initiative 1240, and gave each claim a grade to see who gets to go to the head of the class – and who needs to go back and check their work.
Washington lawmakers have a mandate from the State Supreme Court to fully fund basic K-12 education. State School Superintendent Randy Dorn says that will cost taxpayers an additional $4.1 billion per year.
Dorn’s running unopposed for a second term as Superintendent of Public Instruction. He joins David Hyde to talk about school funding, the debate over charter schools and other issues in education.
The Seattle School Board said a unanimous "no" to charter schools last night. The board members approved a resolution against Initiative 1240, which would bring up to 40 charter schools to Washington over five years.
The campaign to bring charter schools to Washington state has now raised more cash than any other measure on the ballot. Donors have contributed more than $8.9 million to the Yes on 1240 campaign. Of that, 91 percent came from just ten people, according to the Public Disclosure Commission website.