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- Statement from PSESD
December 18, 2020
Superintendents of 38 school systems across the Puget Sound region have announced a joint 2021 state legislative agenda, calling on the Washington State Legislature to put systems and structures in place to get students back in school for in-person learning, while mitigating risks.
Together, the school systems serve nearly 40% of students across Washington state, 55% of whom are students of color. The legislative priorities are aimed to create opportunities and mitigate barriers for each and every student to succeed in school and in life. They ask the Legislature to support efforts to eliminate opportunity gaps based on race, income and other factors that have become even more urgent and acute during the COVID-19 pandemic, and that have historically disadvantaged young people.
“Our unwavering focus is on student learning,” said Laurie Dent, Sumner-Bonney Lake School District Superintendent, “We look forward to working with the Legislature to maintain stable support for schools, including current funding formulas, to ensure students can return to high-quality schools.”
Specifics of the 2021 legislative agenda include:
Access to Learning: equitable access to technology, professional development, and learning acceleration
Student & Staff Safety, Wellness & Health: increased mental health and counseling, staffing and materials to ensure a clean environment
Stable Support: maintain K-12 funding, including enrollment and transportation
Well-Equipped Staff: provide additional professional development for staff about racial literacy, cultural responsiveness and stereotype threat
School Facilities: advance a constitutional amendment authorizing school district bond issues to be approved with a simple majority vote.
The full set of 2021 regional legislative priorities can be found at https://www.psesd.org/programs-services/administrative-management-services/government-relations.