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Spokesman-Review, September 16, 2013
Spokane Public Schools taking proposals as cutoff nears
Seven years of foreign language. Extra math and science. Nine-hour school days and an extended school year. These are the makings of a charter school planned for Spokane next year... more [Return to Top]
HeraldNet, July 10, 2013
Last-gasp suit over charters waste of time
The education obstructionists are back. The establishment forces aligned against reform filed suit in King County Superior Court July 3 to block the charter school law approved by the voters last November. Losers litigating has become a staple of initiative battles here... more [Return to Top]
The Spokesman-Review , July 6, 2013
Suit flunks charter schools before exam
The Washington Education Association clearly doesn’t like the idea of charter schools, but it would be nice if they’d let a couple open and operate before hauling out the ruler and rapping knuckles. But, no. Here’s the lawsuit that was expected when voters passed Initiative 1240 last November... more [Return to Top]
The Seattle Times , July 3, 2013
State teachers union, other groups sue to stop charter schools
A coalition headlined by Washington’s teachers union has filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of a recently-approved state initiative establishing charter schools, the group announced Wednesday... more [Return to Top]
The Seattle Times , June 30, 2013
Districts split over charter schools
Washington voters have decided they want to add charter schools to the education mix in the state, and the three largest districts are taking different approaches to the question: What should charter schools mean to our community?... more [Return to Top]
The Seattle Times , May 28, 2013
Gates foundation funds group to help charter schools
With the opening of Washington’s first charter school likely 15 months away, more dollars from Seattle’s tech economy are flowing toward groups that want to change the way the state thinks about public schools... more [Return to Top]
The News Tribune, May 24, 2013
Peninsula School District says no to charter schools
School board members in the Gig Harbor-area Peninsula School District have opted out of becoming a charter school authorizer, just as their counterparts in Tacoma have done... more [Return to Top]
m.spokesman, April 28, 2013
Spokane Public Schools pursues charter schools
Visions of the kinds of charter schools that could open in Spokane are emerging: a dual-language elementary or middle school; a high school that incorporates two years of college; an academically rigorous elementary school; and a K-8 science, technology, engineering and mathematics school... more [Return to Top]
KING 5 News, April 2, 2013
12 state school districts agree to authorize charter schools
TACOMA, Wash. -- A dozen Washington school districts have sent letters to the state Board of Education indicating intent to authorize charter schools starting in 2014, beating a Monday deadline... more [Return to Top]
Bob Ferguson, Attorney General of Washington, March 29, 2013
Informal Attorney General Opinion dated March 29, 2013
Click on the title above to download the complete report... more [Return to Top]
The News Tribune, March 21, 2013
Tacoma School Board considers becoming charter-school authorizer
Some members of the Tacoma School Board are tiptoeing carefully around the idea of charter schools – and whether they want to signal their intent to become an authorizer of the independently run, publicly funded schools... more [Return to Top]
The Seattle Times, February 24, 2013
Activists, teachers apply for charter-school commission
Education activists, teachers, lawyers, a PTA leader and a woman who used to work with charter schools in California are among the applicants to the new state commission that is expected to approve some of Washington’s first charter schools... more [Return to Top]
The Bellingham Herald, January 9, 2013
WA Board of Ed to draft rules for charter schools
TUMWATER, WASH. - The Washington State Board of Education is ready to take public comment on rules it hopes to adopt in February concerning the next steps toward opening up to eight public charter schools by fall 2014... more [Return to Top]
The Seattle Times, January 8, 2013
Teachers union should withdraw suit to block charter schools
THE state teachers union should not sue over Washington's new charter-schools law. A courtroom battle over Initiative 1240 shifts the focus from improving education to arguing over only one educational strategy that is widely accepted around the country... more [Return to Top]
Herald Net, November 28, 2012
State Teachers' Union to Challenge Charter School Measure - But What About Dorn?
OLYMPIA, Jan. 3.-The state's powerful teachers' union will challenge the charter-schools measure approved by voters last November, perhaps no surprise given the longstanding opposition of the Washington Education Association - but it remains unclear whether state schools superintendent Randy Dorn will join in the lawsuit or file one of his own... more [Return to Top]
Herald Net, November 28, 2012
Dorn should lead, not fight charters
After four hard-fought charter initiative campaigns, legislative foot-dragging, and implacable opposition from the state's public school establishment -- not just the teachers' unions -- Washington voters have approved public charter schools. Initiative 1240, which benefited from substantial funding, passed narrowly but clearly. In a peculiarly illiberal twist, this state that prides itself on innovation has rarely applied the secret sauce to education reform... more [Return to Top]
The Seattle Times, November 28, 2012
As charter schools get going here, best-known charter chains may stay away
The first charter schools in Washington probably will be kitchen-table charters, started by a teacher or principal or two. Many of the nation's best-known charter chains are already committed elsewhere or want to wait and see how the first charters fare... more [Return to Top]
The Seattle Times, November 17, 2012
Editorial: It's time to make charter schools work for Washington state
Washington voters' embrace of charter schools at the ballot box adds another important tool to better serve all students, particularly those most at-risk because of poverty... more [Return to Top]
The Seattle Times , November 12, 2012
Charter schools narrowly win approval in Washington
By a slim margin, Washington voters have approved Initiative 1240, which will allow up to 40 charter schools to open here over the next five years. The outcome makes Washington the 42nd state in the nation to allow charters, 20 years after Minnesota passed the nation's first charter-school law... more [Return to Top]
Washington Charter School Resource Center, November 10, 2012
Update on General Elections Results for Initiative Measure No. 1240
Almost 800,000 additional ballots have been counted since Election Night, and Initiative 1240 is looking more and more like it will ultimately win a majority of votes cast when the election results are ultimately certified by the Secretary of State... more [Return to Top]
The Spokesman-Review, November 9, 2012
Spokane will seek charter school
Although votes are still being counted on Washington's charter school initiative, Spokane Public Schools officials have already decided the district will apply to have one if it passes... more [Return to Top], November 6, 2012
November 6, 2012 General Elections Results for Initiative Measure No. 1240 which Concerns creation of a public charter school system
Dear Friends, The 2012 Charter Public Schools ballot initiative (I-1240) is currently ahead 51.2% to 48.8%, with about half the votes counted... more [Return to Top]
King5, October 18, 2012
KING 5 poll: Initiatives still ahead; AG race now a toss-up
Four ballot measures -- including gay marriage and marijuana legalization -- are leading among voters who are likely to cast ballots in the fall election, a new KING 5 poll shows... more [Return to Top]
The News Tribune, September 12, 2012
Editorial: Editorial: I-1240: An essential escape route from failing schools
We'll let Initiative 1240 speak for itself. The measure would authorize the creation of up to 40 charter schools, public schools freed from many bureaucratic regulations. They are commonly launched and governed by teachers and parents who believe their local schools are failing their students... more [Return to Top]
King 5 Up Front Pollst, September 11, 2012
KING 5 poll: Widespread support for legal marijuana, same-sex marriage
The KING 5 poll also suggests broad support for two other initatives -- I-1240 [up 52-26%]
he KING 5 poll also suggests broad support for two other initatives -- I-1240, which would authorize the creation of up to 40 public charter schools in the state, and I-1185, the Tim Eyman-backed initiative that would affirm a state law that requires two-thirds majorities in the legislature to approve a tax increase... more [Return to Top]
Herald Net, September 2, 2012
Initiative gets 'A' from U.S. charter school group
If voters pass an initiative allowing charter schools, Washington will become one of the nation's leaders in its embrace of the nontraditional mode of educating students with public funds... more [Return to Top]
Seattle Times, July 6, 2012
Charter schools measure officially on Wash. ballot
The charter schools initiative is officially on the Washington state ballot for November. Secretary of State Sam Reed announced Wednesday that supporters easily qualified by submitting more than enough signatures... more [Return to Top]
Seattle Times, July 6, 2012
Charter school initiative gets 350,000 signatures, likely headed for ballot
Supporters of an initiative to allow charter schools in Washington state submitted about 350,000 signatures to the Secretary of State this morning, more than enough to qualify for the November ballot... more [Return to Top]
The Olympian, June 15, 2012
UPDATE - Judge OK's ballot for I-1240 (charter schools)
Backers of Initiative 1240 are now free to print petitions and start collecting signatures for their measure to create a new public charter school system in Washington. Judge Lisa Sutton gave approval to final ballot-title language this morning after hearing in Thurston County Superior Court to hear proposals from parties on opposite sides of the issue... more [Return to Top]
Seattle Times, May 22, 2012
Advocacy groups file initiative to put charter schools on November ballot
Maybe a fourth time will be the charm. A coalition of education advocacy groups on Tuesday started the process of once again asking voters to allow charter schools in Washington state... more [Return to Top]
The News Tribune, May 22, 2012
Charter school advocates make last-minute attempt to reach 2012 ballot
The chief of staff for the League of Education Voters filed a measure today that would ask voters this November to allow up to 40 charter schools in Washington - if supporters can accumulate 241,153 signatures by July 6 to get it on the ballot... more [Return to Top]
Seattle Times, February 27, 2012
Another Democratic donor raises concerns about education changes
Paul Brainerd, a major Democratic contributor, has joined a growing number of party donors who say they feel the state is lagging on education reform... more [Return to Top]
Seattle Times, February 26, 2012
Groups consider trying to put charter-school initiative on ballot
With a proposal to introduce charter schools into Washington still stalled in the Legislature, those seeking to shake up the state education system are considering other avenues, including again taking the issue to the ballot box, several leaders of the so-called "education reform" movement said last week... more [Return to Top]
Seattle Times, January 16, 2012
Education reform proposals, including charters, could improve Washington state
Education reforms proposed by Gov. Chris Gregoire and the state Legislature should gain traction. Charter schools and better principal and teacher evaluations are critical improvements. A SLEW of education reforms proposed to the state Legislature signal a chance to get real work done this session... more [Return to Top]
Seattle Times, December 23 2011
Other cities might help Seattle close achievement gaps among black students
AFRICAN-American students are lagging behind other students, including other black ethnic students whose home language is not English, according to new numbers released by Seattle Public Schools. ["'Alarming' new test-score gap discovered in Seattle schools," page one, Dec. 19.] This is an important problem that other cities have confronted head-on. First, they have admitted they really don't know how to solve the problem. Second, they acknowledge that the normal remedies school districts use to solve achievement problems are too weak to work... more [Return to Top]
Education & the Work Force, September 1, 2011
UPDATED: H.R. 2218, The Empowering Parents through Quality Charter Schools Act
Updated to reflect bill text for House consideration. -- WASHINGTON, D.C. | September 1, 2011 -
THE PROBLEM: Charter schools empower parents to play a more active role in their child's education, open doors for teachers to pioneer fresh teaching methods, encourage state and local innovation, and help students escape underperforming schools. Despite high demand and an estimated 420,000 students on charter school wait lists, significant barriers to quality charter school growth exist...
more [Return to Top]
City Journal, June 10, 2011
Immune to Reform
Last fall, I took my wife-a well-informed, intelligent professional who unintentionally married into the contentious world of education reform-to see Davis Guggenheim's documentary about the plight of America's public schools, Waiting for Superman. She left the theater convinced that our schools face clear problems that have some clear solutions. But she was puzzled about why reforming the system was so difficult. She knew that the teachers' unions had something to do with what was wrong with the schools, but just how they wielded so much power baffled her... more [Return to Top]
CBS News, August 24, 2010
Race to Top Education Grants Announced (click to watch CBS News video clip)
At a time of strapped school budgets, educators had a shot at grants worth from $75 million to $700 million per state. Nancy Cordes reports on the top winners and how the funds will be used in the winning states... more [Return to Top]
The News Tribune, June 2, 2010
Race to Top application in
OLYMPIA - With about 90 percent of districts signed on statewide, Washington joined 34 other states and the District of Columbia and met the deadline to apply for money in the second round of the federal Race to the Top competition... more[Return to Top]
Education Week , May 21, 2010
Colorado Overhauls Teacher Tenure System
Gov. Bill Ritter on Thursday signed a bill that will require teachers to be judged on the performance of their students and put their jobs on the line if they fail... more [Return to Top]
New York Times , May 17, 2010
The Teachers' Unions' Last Stand
MICHAEL MULGREW is an affable former Brooklyn vocational-high-school teacher who took over last year as head of New York City's United Federation of Teachers when his predecessor, Randi Weingarten, moved to Washington to run the national American Federation of Teachers. Over breakfast in March, we talked about a movement spreading across the country to hold public-school teachers accountable by compensating, promoting or even removing them according to the results they produce in class, as measured in part by student test scores... more [Return to Top], October 21 , 2009
Washington shouldn't say no to schools innovation
The $4.35 billion Race to the Top Fund provides a powerful incentive for Washington to join the education mainstream. More discretionary money than the feds have ever made available, the funds will be awarded to states to spur and support eduction reform... more [Return to Top]
Editorial:, November 4 , 2009
No Child Left Behind
Opponents of school choice are running out of excuses as evidence continues to roll in about the positive impact of charter schools... more

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Editorial:, September 28, 2009
Research shows charter schools can excel
ONE OF THE long-standing misperceptions about charter schools is that they cherry-pick the better students from an area, resulting in higher test scores than in comparable regular public schools... more [Return to Top], September 15, 2009
Charter school debate is worth revisiting

This state’s steadfast refusal to allow charter schools is going to have a financial consequence. Washington is one of 11 states without charter schools, and that puts this state at the back of the line when it comes to receiving more than $4 billion in federal education grants... more [Return to Top]
FOR RELEASE: July 29, 2009
U.S. Education Department awards $82 million in charter school grants to five states to increase public school options

The U.S. Department of Education's Office of Innovation and Improvement (OII) today announced the award of five charter school grants, totaling $82 million, to state education agencies in Arizona, Louisiana, New Mexico, Tennessee and Wisconsin to increase public school options in those states... more [Return to Top]
Important charter school news from around the country
We're adding charter school related news articles to our website. Click to read National, Washington, or Op-Ed pieces... more [Return to Top]

Studies, Reports, & Studies
The Factory: At the Pacific Rim charter schools, they make scholars
Jump-Starting the Charter School Movement: Strategic Grantmaking in Education
Non-partisan analysis of Referendum 55

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