RESOLUTION 13 - 003
Whereas the Legislature adopted a revised definition of the program of basic education with Engrossed Substitute House Bill 2261 (Chapter 548, Laws of 2009) and Substitute House Bill 2776 (Chapter 236, Laws of 2010); and
Whereas the revised definition of that basic education program includes full funding for pupil transportation, maintenance, supplies and operating costs, full-day kindergarten, smaller class sizes, increased instructional hours, and the opportunity for a 24-credit high school diploma; and
Whereas the revised definition also includes programs to help students through the Learning Assistance Program, Transitional Bilingual Instruction Program, Highly Capable Students program, and Special Education; and
Whereas the Legislature established new methods to distribute state funds to school districts to support these changes; and
Whereas the Legislature created working groups to provide input and advice to implement the new laws, including a funding formula technical working group and compensation work group; and
Whereas the Legislature also created the Quality Education Council to oversee the implementation of the state’s redefined program of basic education, review reports from the working groups, and make recommendations to the Legislature annually, and the Quality Education Council has recommended staffing levels and funding priorities; and
Whereas the Legislature has adopted a specific schedule in statute for some elements of this program of basic education and implementation by 2018 for other elements; and
Whereas the Supreme Court determined in the McCleary vs. State of Washington opinion issued January 5, 2012 that the state is violating its constitutional obligation by consistently failing to provide enough funding for basic education for more than one million students in our public school system; and
Whereas this Supreme Court decision identified recently enacted laws which, if fully funded, would remedy many deficiencies in the K-12 funding system; and
Whereas the Supreme Court retained jurisdiction to evaluate the Legislature’s progress in meeting its constitution obligation to provide more than just “adequate” funding and to eliminate the state’s reliance on local property taxes to support basic education; and
Whereas the Supreme Court order from December 2012 directed the 2013 Legislature to establish a phase-in plan that addresses “all areas of K-12 education identified in ESHB 2261;” and
Whereas the Legislature has continued to enact laws that strengthen accountability of the K-12 system, including new teacher and principal evaluations, adoption of the national Common Core State Standards, an accountability index to recognize and support schools in their success; and
Whereas the state’s own submissions in the McCleary case show projected state costs to be more than $11 billion in new funding through 2018 and the Joint Education Funding Task Force has recommended a starting investment of $1.4 billion in the 2013-15 biennium;
Now therefore be it resolved, that the San Juan Island School District No. 149 Board of Directors requests the Legislature establish a clear and specific phase-in plan and schedule that addresses funding for all aspects of ESHB 2261, SHB 2776 and E2SSB 6696 (Chapter 235, Laws of 2010) that makes a significant investment, beginning in the 2013-15 biennium, in the redefined program of basic education as described in this resolution.
Be if further resolved, that the San Juan Island School District No. 149 Board of Directors expects the Legislature to adopt a comprehensive system for stable and sustainable revenue that meets the requirements of Washington’s K-12 public schools and students.
Be it further resolved, that the San Juan Island School District No. 149 Board of Directors expects the Legislature to include in these funding phase in plans and comprehensive systems for stable and sustainable revenue, appropriate provisions for equitable funding and taxation, whether through Levy Equalization or another funding mechanism.
Adopted at a regular meeting of the San Juan Island School District No. 149 Board of Directors this 27thday of February, 2013.