Understand the consequences of underfunded K-12 students

The Issues of Underfunding — A crisis in the making

Funding Washington Schools

Today’s News Headlines  Link to WASSDA’s daily Washington paper’s headlines on education topics.

Washington State is a

world-wide economy

requiring a world-class

education system

delivering students

a world-leading education.

Blog on WA Ed Funding by Rep. Ross Hunter - Chair Ways & Means



Underfunding Explained In 1 Min

A brief ‘elevator speech’ illustrates the points to get across -

Expert studies show that it would cost anywhere from $2,000 to $4,000 more per student to bring all students up to WA State standards and to better prepare them for the 21st century.

Meanwhile, in an era of declining funds and increasing costs, our school districts have had to make tough budget decisions.

Districts have

· put off buying textbooks to ensure they have the funds to heat their schools.

· offered small remedial classes at the cost of overcrowding regular core classes.

· eliminated librarian and counselor positions to ensure they have a sufficient number of classroom teachers.

At the same time, and what’s most disheartening, is that only 19 out of 100 kids who enter 9th grade in our public schools actually go on to get some kind of degree at universities or community colleges.

Yet businesses in the trades and professions of every kind in our state are crying for more and better trained workers.

Now is the time to make an investment in our children’s future.   Now is the time to support the full funding of basic education.

                           Barb Billinghurst

(Auto-translate to other languages)

Causes for Underfunding Of Schools Are Easily Identified

Fully fund the laws in practice, or change the laws —

ed reform arrives via all routes

Washington State can’t fund school districts at the level required to meet modern WA State standards and laws. This results in the State not providing the world-class education we expect and need for building the skills most businesses and industries say are required of high school graduates.

Declining funding and increasing costs have led school districts to a tipping point. WA State does not deliver enough funding to pay for the minimum education mandated by state law (legally termed “Basic Education”). To deliver the Basic Education, school districts are spending large amounts of funds from their other fixed sources that should be paying for other vital parts of the education experience.

School districts are not adequately educating all students as required by law. Modern demographics—who is in the schools—exceed the capability of WA State’s outdated funding systems to adequately educate them all. When the state’s funding doesn’t meet the actual costs, some districts make up the difference with levy funds and donations from foundation or school fundraisers. Not all districts can raise the same amount of funds to cover the gap — not all students in WA State are receiving the same Basic Education.

School districts are often funded through inconsistent, illogical and inflexible laws and policies. The financial practices don’t always adequately fulfill the law nor meet the real needs. The fiscal support is needed to get the job done as legally required. The funding must be changed, or the laws governing the system.

The core issues to understand around funding schools:

State Laws & Education Policy

Local Control Factors and School Boards

School Funding Facts

Student Data

Teachers & Staff Roles

Building & Facility Info

Will Money Make A Difference, and How?

This website highlights for every Washingtonian that their livelihoods, as well as the students’, are affected by the outcomes from the underfunding of their public education.

School District Leadership is Cornered

School districts perform staggering efforts to isolate students from the direct effects of underfunding in the class room. School communities may be unaware of the pervasive results from budget constraints — much of the public simply don’t recognize the lost opportunities.

Funding processes now lag far behind schools’ actual capability to deliver a world-class education. In spite of all the well documented funding problems, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce ranked WA 3rd in the nation in 2007 for the return it gets on its ed investment .

The Legislative Goals for 2011, 2012, and now 2013 Session

Preserve implementation of ESHB 2261 Bill - not lose ground on the funding of key ed reform principles. Amid the most difficult budget in decades, identifying the key priorities to continue funding programs to be most ready when the economy strengthens.


Mar 16, 2013: 2013 Wa State Fiscal Information: School District financial data - review stats per school district.

Vote!  Vote!  Vote!

Vote!  Vote!  Vote!

Get info on registering

to vote at

WA Sec. of State

Schools in Crisis: A State Problem Playing Out Locally

Far too many students in Washington State’s 295 school districts are not future-ready after high school.

Declining State funding and increasing local costs have led school districts to an unprecedented tipping point.

The State’s outdated Basic Ed funding to school districts is compromising our future — students’ options after high school are in jeopardy.

Why This Website?

Rising costs and declining funds have strained our local schools to the breaking point. We can draw connections at the local level and explain to every legislator exactly what the gaps are in the State’s funding.

Common questions directly related to underfunding.

There is a Crisis causes and consequences shared across Washington State school funding.

The Evidence is Rational school funding facts relevant and critical to every WA community.

There is Opportunity for a Solution recommendations in progress from the Basic Ed Finance Task Force.

Advocacy Works inform and support policymakers as they debate ed funding issues.

The Big Question — has WA State met its

constitutional obligation

to amply fund Washington K-12 public education?