Week 20 - Legislative Session Updates
On Tuesday, the first special session ended with
no obvious progress
toward a budget agreement, and Governor Inslee immediately called for a second 30-day period, which began 15 minutes later. In his
on this round, the governor talked about "the necessity of compromise" following a first special session that "produced too little" and "moved too slowly."
Some have dubbed the next 30 days the "Extra Special Session," and it appears that things are beginning to thaw a bit as budget writers have progressed from occasional informal talks (and mean tweets) to regular discussions about key budget items.
The Seattle Times editorial board is less optimistic about these baby steps. An
last Friday suggested that Governor Inslee should refuse to call another special session, claiming the legislature is incapable of reaching a budget deal in "30 - or 300 - more days."
On the other hand, we're seeing multiple reports of significant progress from the bipartisan Education Funding Task Force (EFTF). On Tuesday, a
in The Columbian quoted Senator Ann Rivers as saying lawmakers are "very close" to a deal on the "education piece."
Part of each new session is the reintroduction of those bills that passed in their houses of origin but died in the opposite houses. That brings several education-related bills back to life, and, although most legislators will remain at home for the bulk of this session, the House did convene on Thursday to re-pass a number of bills, including
, which would decouple state assessments from graduation requirements. Meanwhile, the clock keeps ticking for the Class of 2017.
CSTP's Stories From School Blogger Mark Gardner has summed this session up well in a recent
On Wednesday, Superintendent Reykdal held a
to lay out his vision for comprehensive school reform. According to the Spokesman Review,
the six-year plan
is designed to get the legislature to look beyond the immediate school funding issue and "
start thinking about how to reshape the system in the coming years."
Odds & Ends
And finally, we know you'd never consider the End-of-May, Movie-as Lesson-Plan Survival Strategy, but this teacher tool might come in handy:
Have a great weekend!
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CSTP relays these legislative updates to provide information on bills, budgets and legislative processes. CSTP doesn't have a legislative agenda, but does track legislative issues most relevant to teaching.