April 11, 2016
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Election 2016: More changes in Olympia as retirements announced for Sens. Parlette and McAuliffe, Lands Commissioner Goldmark

Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, an Okanogan Democrat, will not run for re-election to a third term in the office that guides management of 5.6 million acres of state forest, range, commercial and aquatic lands. He had been raising money for a run and was a heavy favorite in the August primary, The Seattle Times reports. The only declared candidates so far are Democrat Karen Porterfield and Libertarian Steven Nielsen.

Sen. Linda Evans Parlette, R-Wenatchee, chair of the Senate Majority Coalition Caucus, announced today that she will retire at the end of this term and will not seek reelection. First elected to the House of Representatives in 1996, she was elected to the Senate in 2000 and won reelection three more times.

Sen. Rosemary McAuliffe, D-Bothell, announced Wednesday she will not seek re-election this year. She was first elected to the Senate in the 1st Legislative District in 1992 and was re-elected five times, The Herald reports. Rep. Luis Moscoso, D-Bothell, and 2012 Democratic challenger Guy Palumbo, as well as Republican Ed Barton of Bothell are reportedly interested in the seat.

Rep. Maureen Walsh, R-Walla Walla, will run for the 16th District Senate seat being vacated by retiring Sen. Mike Hewitt, R-Walla Walla. Walsh has been in the state House for 12 years.

Michelle Chatterton, a King County emergency management program coordinator, will run for the 25th District House seat currently held by Rep. Hans Zeiger, R-Puyallup. Zeiger is leaving the House to run for the Senate. Chatterton, a Democrat, will face Republican Joyce McDonald, a Pierce County Council member who has previously served five terms in the House. The News Tribune has more.

The primary election is Aug. 2. The top two candidates in every race will move forward to the Nov. 8 general election.

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Let's Seek Solutions Together

It's time to move forward on charter schools

By Robin Lake, director of the Center on Reinventing Public Education and an affiliate faculty member at the University of Washington Bothell

Charter schools aren't some magic solution. But they are proving themselves a valued component of 21st-century public schooling by demonstrating what's possible when schools are freed from certain rules and regulations in exchange for being held accountable for student outcomes. Far from a distraction, charter schools are here to stay. Far from damaging public education, when ably implemented, charter schools enrich and strengthen the fabric of public education.

It is time to move on and focus on students, not battle lines...
Click here to read the full op-ed in The Seattle Times
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A four-year apprenticeship program can equal or exceed the earning potential of a postsecondary degree. An apprentice electrician earns $19 an hour, which can be achieved the first year out of high school. By the time an electrician completes a five-year apprenticeship program, he or she could be making close to $100,000 a year.

Unfortunately, every time trade employers need workers, they scratch their heads and do whatever they can to attract and retain employees to fit their business models. Contractors are hiring anyone who can fog a mirror because there aren't enough bodies...

Shop classes are disappearing because schools are losing funding. The deeper challenge is we need to start instilling pride into the traditional trades. Even when I was young, I used to say, "I am just a construction worker." I almost apologized for it. We have to start recognizing that our society would grind to a halt without skilled carpenters, laborers, chefs and hotel managers...
Click here to read the full op-ed in The Seattle Times
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