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Education & Workforce Development Policy

2018-2019 Legislative Objectives

Background

AWB acknowledges how lawmakers from both parties have worked together over the last four years to make historic investments in school funding, adding an additional $4.6 billion for K-12 education -- plus another $8.4 billion planned through 2021. Going forward, AWB supports the implementation of education reform policies that enhance student learning and support job skills training that is valuable to the state’s employers and allows Washington students to compete for Washington jobs. We believe all education investments should demonstrably increase student achievement and continue to support consistent, clear, and challenging academic standards to improve student outcomes. Our state’s education system must focus on education attainment efforts in early learning, K-12, and all avenues of postsecondary education to support our competitive and global state economy. Washington must close the current skills gap that is resulting in a growing number of unfilled jobs opportunities by ensuring that every student in Washington State has access to a world-class education. With that goal in mind, AWB supports the following legislative objectives:

Objectives

  • Any investment of taxpayers’ dollars directed to fund education programs should have a demonstrated ability to enhance student learning with clear articulation of expected outcomes and performance measures associated with the funding at both the state and local level. Accordingly, AWB supports public charter schools, including equalizing overall per student funding.

  • Support education reforms and career-connected learning opportunities that will provide skills training that prepares the next generation for post-secondary programs in high-demand fields. These include work-based learning activities, student internships, and mentorships, and efforts to address opportunity gaps for populations with barriers to education opportunities. These reforms will elevate this and the next generation of students through meaningful accountability, consistent standards of achievement and innovative opportunities in learning.

  • Support early learning efforts that prepare Washington children with the skills necessary to enter the state’s K-12 system ready to learn.

  • Expand Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) to all levels of education throughout the state to ensure that classroom and career/technical education curricula is accessible to, and, prepares students for, pursuing career or post-secondary education opportunities.

  • Support teacher skills enhancement, work-based learning activities for teachers and administrators, and principal-directed quality assessments and evaluations to improve teacher quality, which research demonstrates is paramount to student achievement.

  • Eliminate barriers for youth employment and training to encourage innovative work-based learning opportunities and create comprehensive workforce training strategies that include business and all institutions of higher learning.

  • Support work experience and military service credits to advance more students through our institutions of higher education and into the job market.

  • Advocate for teacher learning opportunities including alternative routes to certification and business externship opportunities

(Updated Jan. 11, 2018)

For More Information

For questions, please contact AWB's Amy K. Anderson at 1.800.521.9325 or AmyA@awb.org.

PDF Version of this Legislative Objective