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A Gift from the Washington Supreme Court

posted Dec 21, 2012, 12:10 PM by Joseph Vellegas
Dear AEA,

Today, the Washington Supreme Court issued students, their families and each of you a holiday gift: a ruling that orders the Legislature to submit a real and meaningful plan to fund K-12 education at the conclusion of the 2013 legislative session.

The ruling is strongly worded and unequivocal in its intent -- delay is not an option. The state must act in 2013. Check out some of the language:

"The State's first report falls short … it does not sufficiently indicate how full compliance will be achieved."

"Each day there is delay risks another school year in which Washington children are denied the constitutionally adequate education that is the State's paramount duty to provide."

And my personal favorite, "In education, student progress is measured by yearly benchmarks according to essential academic goals and requirements. The State should expect no less of itself than of its students ... We cannot wait until 'graduation' in 2018 to determine if the State has met minimum constitutional standards."

Check out the brief and easy to read ruling. Read it, share it with your friends, family and colleagues.

While we have the power of the court behind us, that does not mean the job will be easy. It will take the on-going and concerted efforts of all of us to ensure that the Legislature and new governor meet the challenge ahead of them and us. That's why funding McCleary is our top priority at WEA. And why, after what we hope will be a restful holiday break for all, I'll be back, asking your help in holding our Legislature and new governor accountable to our constitution and the Washington Supreme Court's order.

In the meantime, enjoy your much deserved holiday vacation. Best wishes to you and yours.
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