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New study gives Washington C grade for education, F for funding

Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn says a new study giving Washington an F for funding underscores the state's failure to adequately fund education. (AP file)

A new nationwide study on education ranks Washington state 38th, and the state's top educator says it's just more proof Washington is failing when it comes to education.

Washington gets an overall C grade in the Quality Counts study by Education Week. The evaluation is based on six categories including student achievement, teacher quality and spending.

The highest marks include B grades for early foundations in elementary education, funding equity between large and small districts and standards and assessments. But the reports gives Washington a failing grade for overall education spending.

"The new Quality Counts report is another indicator of just how inadequate education funding is," said Randy Dorn, State Superintendent of Public Instruction.

"In its analysis of all states, Education Week ranked Washington 42nd in per-pupil spending and 44th in state expenditures as a percent of state taxable resources."

The ranking underscores a recent state Supreme Court ruling that Washington is failing to adequately fund education, according to Dorn.

And the state's education leader said the lack of funding explains other low grades on the report as well.

"Inadequate funding accounts for other low grades as well. Among the reasons the state received a D- for teacher professional development are the state's failure to finance professional development for all districts, the lack of a formal teacher induction and the lack of a mentoring program for all new teachers," said Dorn.

But there is at least one bright spot. The report gives Washington an A for preparing students for the economy and workforce, crediting career-tech diplomas, industry certification, and other school-to-work opportunities.

About the Author


Josh Kerns is an award winning reporter/anchor and host of KIRO Radio's Seattle Sounds (Sunday afternoons 5-6p) and a digital content producer for MyNorthwest.com.

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