WEA members lobby for competitive, professional pay in Olympia
Back in November, the Washington Supreme Court ordered lawmakers to increase funding for K-12 basic education by a Sept. 1, 2018 deadline.
Specifically, the Court ruled the state needed to increase funding for K-12 educator salaries by about another $1 billion this year, as required by the Court’s 2012 McCleary decision.
With the current legislative session set to end March 8, legislators have about a week. Fortunately, both the state House and Senate have approved separate supplemental budget plans that include substantial increases in salary funding. Now, the two bodies need to agree on and pass a final budget.
WEA members will be in Olympia Wednesday, Feb. 28, lobbying legislators to pass a budget that complies with the Court’s order. Competitive, professional compensation is necessary to continue attracting and keeping, committed, qualified, caring certificated educators and support staff for our students.
They’re also urging legislators to lift the 2018-19 salary limit, which works against the goal to reach competitive, professional pay next year.
Districts also need greater flexibility in local levies to meet the needs of their students and communities.
“I’m proud of our education allies in both the House and the Senate,” said Pam Kruse, a WEA member-lobbyist and WEA-PAC Board member. “Now we need the entire Legislature to approve a supplemental budget that meets the Sept. 1, 2018 deadline for increasing K-12 funding.”
Both the House and the Senate have bills that attempt to improve aspects of the McCleary school funding plan the Legislature approved last year.