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Washington Education Bills Lack Response To Supreme Court Ruling

Alexandra Kocik
Northwest News Network

OLYMPIA, Wash. – A single shiny red apple sat atop each desk on the Washington Senate floor Wednesday to represent a day full of voting on education issues. Senators deliberated and passed multiple measures. One would rank schools with A through F grades. Another would make it easier for principals to get rid of ineffective teachers.

But Democrats like Sen. David Frockt point out that lawmakers have not yet responded to a state Supreme Court ruling known as the McCleary decision. It requires more funding for schools.

“Sen. Rolfes has a bill that would fully fund and put us on the path to implementing the McCleary task force recommendations," Frockt said. "That bill has not even gotten a hearing.”

Sen. Christine Rolfes’ bill would give money to schools based on estimates to reduce class sizes and increase school hours. Past estimates put the cost of meeting the McCleary obligations at $1.4 billion over the next two years.