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ERIC Number: EJ998264
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Oct-17
Pages: 2
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0277-4232
Charters, K-12 Aid Roiling Wash. State
Ujifusa, Andrew
Education Week, v32 n8 p1, 24 Oct 2012
A tight race for governor, the heavy burden of rebuilding a school funding system recently declared unconstitutional, and a fourth ballot measure in two decades on charter schools has placed Washington state on an intense--and unpredictable--road for education this year. Washington is one of nine states that do not allow charter schools, and the largest among them in population. Charter advocates nationally, who are keeping a close eye on the referendum, stress that Washington is the only noncharter state with a large metropolitan area such as Seattle-Tacoma, home to many underprivileged students they argue would benefit most from charters. The Republican candidate for governor, state Attorney General Rob McKenna, supports charters, but he also wants to partner with the state teachers' union to expand the share of the state budget dedicated to K-12 public schools. His Democratic opponent, Jay Inslee, a former congressman, says charters would dilute resources needed by a school system already facing plenty of demands. Many of his supporters, especially those in the 82,000-member Washington Education Association, see Mr. McKenna as carved from the mold of Wisconsin GOP Gov. Scott Walker, a union antagonist, and see vouchers and similar policies on the horizon if he wins. And both candidates are grappling with a landmark state Supreme Court ruling in January requiring Washington to revamp its funding system, with mixed reviews and vague plans on the best ways forward. This is the fourth time Washington voters have gotten a chance to allow charter schools--the idea was voted down in 1996, 2000, and 2004. If approved, the initiative on next month's ballot would permit up to 40 charters to begin operating statewide (there are about 2,280 public schools in the state and roughly 290 districts). A statewide commission would approve them, as could districts that apply to be authorizers, with commission members appointed by the governor and the leaders of both legislative chambers.
Editorial Projects in Education. 6935 Arlington Road Suite 100, Bethesda, MD 20814-5233. Tel: 800-346-1834; Tel: 301-280-3100; e-mail: customercare@epe.org; Web site: http://www.edweek.org/info/about/
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Washington