Call to Action –Increase the levy authority
Dear Washington State PTA member,
Please contact your legislators and help advocate to increase funding to support the Washington State PTA’s top 5 issue “Strategic K-12 Investments to Close Gaps”. Too many districts are facing huge shortfalls which penalize students and especially those most at risk.
Here are the message points and please customize to reflect your personal story or you district’s shortcomings.
- Washington State PTA supports legislation that increases the levy authority above the current thresholds so that voters in all districts have the opportunity to support enrichment activities that benefit their students and to help narrow the achievement and opportunity gaps.
- Washington State PTA also supports a more equitable Local Effort Assistance (LEA) solution that would increase the funding above the $1,500 limit. At a minimum this session, WSPTA supports maintaining the current 2019 LEA funding level per district and opposes proposals that would result in less LEA funding in 2020 or require districts to ask voters to approve additional levy authority to receive current LEA funding levels.
- Washington State PTA strongly supports investments in special education that close the gap between services needed to implement a student’s IEP and the level of state funding. At a minimum, we support increasing the special education multiplier to 1.0 for all school districts. Through adopted resolutions, WSPTA staunchly endorses policies that improve including students with disabilities in the “least restrictive environment.” However, with the significant funding gaps in districts large and small, Washington State PTA urges the Legislature to increase the multiplier for ALL districts and not adopt a “two-tiered approach” until the funding gaps are closed or narrowed significantly.
- Washington State PTA supports a one-year delay of compliance with the K-3 class size ratio requirement. Washington State PTA has long supported smaller class sizes to improve learning for all students. While school districts have had two years to reach this smaller ratio, several factors prevent many districts from reaching that ratio. Cutting funding for districts that can’t reach the ratio without additional physical classrooms or elementary school teachers, for instance, will only increase class sizes and lead to further inequities across the state.
We are asking you to send a message now to your Legislators asking them to support strategic funding to increase the levy authority, equitable levy funding for LEA districts, increased funding for special ed students and a one-year delay in the K-3 class size compliance mandate.
You can customize the message, especially if you know how your district is impacted by the lack of funding or is struggling with funding and can’t afford the loss of more resources. Please share this message with members of your council, and encourage them to write their Legislators too.