Search

Chapter 28A.657 RCW

ACCOUNTABILITY SYSTEM

RCW Sections

28A.657.005Findings.
28A.657.010Definitions.
28A.657.020Persistently lowest-achieving schools -- Challenged schools -- Identification -- Criteria -- Washington achievement index.
28A.657.030Required action districts -- Recommendation for designation -- Reconsideration -- Designation -- Notice.
28A.657.040Academic performance audits of lowest-achieving schools in required action districts -- External review teams -- Audit findings.
28A.657.050Required action plans -- Development -- Publication of guidelines, research, and models -- Submission -- Contents -- Effect on existing collective bargaining agreements.
28A.657.060Required action plans -- Approval or nonapproval by state board of education -- Resubmission or reconsideration -- Implementation.
28A.657.070Required action plan review panel -- Membership -- Duties -- Timelines and procedures for deliberations.
28A.657.080Redirecting Title I funds based on academic performance audit findings.
28A.657.090Required action plans -- Implementation -- Technical assistance and funds -- Progress report.
28A.657.100Required action districts -- Progress reports -- Release from designation -- Assignment to level two of the required action process.
28A.657.105Required action process -- Level two schools and plans.
28A.657.110Accountability framework for system of support for challenged schools -- Washington achievement index -- Recognition of schools for exemplary performance -- Use of state system to replace federal accountability system.
28A.657.120Rules.
28A.657.130Education accountability system oversight committee -- Membership -- Duties -- Reports.


28A.657.005
Findings.

(1) The legislature finds that an effective educational accountability system is premised on creating and maintaining partnerships between the state and local school district boards of directors. The legislature also recognizes it takes time to make significant changes that are sustainable over the long term in an educational system that serves more than one million students from diverse communities.

     (2) The legislature further finds that it is the state's responsibility to create a coherent and effective accountability framework for the continuous improvement of all schools and school districts. This system must provide an excellent and equitable education for all students, an aligned federal and state accountability system, and the tools necessary for schools and school districts to be accountable. These tools include accounting and data reporting systems, assessment systems to monitor student achievement, and a comprehensive system of differentiated support, targeted assistance, and, if necessary, intervention.

     (3) The office of the superintendent of public instruction is responsible for developing and implementing the accountability tools to build district capacity and working within federal and state guidelines. The legislature assigned the state board of education responsibility and oversight for creating an accountability framework. This framework provides a unified system of support for challenged schools that aligns with basic education, increases the level of support based upon the magnitude of need, and uses data for decisions. Such a system will identify schools and their districts for recognition as well as for additional state support.

     (4) For a specific group of persistently lowest-achieving schools and their districts, it is necessary to provide a required action process that creates a partnership between the state and local district to target funds and assistance to turn around the identified schools. The legislature finds that state takeover of persistently lowest-achieving schools is unlikely to produce long-term improvement in student achievement because takeover is an unsustainable approach to school governance and an inadequate response to addressing the underlying barriers to improved outcomes for all students. However, in the rare case of a persistently lowest-achieving school that continues to fail to improve even after required action and supplemental assistance, it is appropriate and necessary to assign the superintendent of public instruction the responsibility to intercede, provide robust technical assistance, and direct the necessary interventions. Even though the superintendent of public instruction continues to work in partnership with the local school board, the superintendent of public instruction is accountable for assuring that adequate steps are taken to improve student achievement in these schools.

     (5) Phase I of this accountability system will recognize schools that have done an exemplary job of raising student achievement and closing the achievement gaps using the Washington achievement index adopted by the state board of education. The state board of education shall have ongoing collaboration with the educational opportunity gap oversight and accountability committee regarding the measures used to measure the closing of the achievement gaps and recognition provided to the school districts for closing the achievement gaps. Phase I will also target the lowest five percent of persistently lowest-achieving schools defined under federal guidelines to provide federal funds and federal intervention models through a voluntary option in 2010, and for those who do not volunteer and have not improved student achievement, a required action process beginning in 2011.

     (6) Phase II of this accountability system will work toward implementing the Washington achievement index for identification of challenged schools in need of improvement, including those that are not Title I schools, and the use of state and local intervention models and federal and state funds through a comprehensive system of differentiated support, targeted assistance, and intervention beginning in the 2014-15 school year. If federal approval of the Washington achievement index is not obtained, the federal guidelines for identifying schools will continue to be used. If it ever becomes necessary, a process is established to assign responsibility to the superintendent of public instruction to intervene in persistently lowest-achieving schools that have failed to improve despite required action.

     (7) The expectation from implementation of this accountability system is the improvement of student achievement for all students to prepare them for postsecondary education, work, and global citizenship in the twenty-first century.

[2013 c 159 § 1; 2010 c 235 § 101.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.010
Definitions.

The definitions in this section apply throughout this chapter unless the context clearly requires otherwise.

     (1) "All students group" means those students in grades three through eight and high school who take the state's assessment in reading or English language arts and mathematics required under 20 U.S.C. Sec. 6311(b)(3).

     (2) "Title I" means Title I, part A of the federal elementary and secondary education act of 1965 (ESEA) (20 U.S.C. Secs. 6311-6322).

     (3) "Turnaround principles" include but are not limited to the following:

     (a) Providing strong leadership;

     (b) Ensuring teachers are effective and able to improve instruction;

     (c) Increasing learning time;

     (d) Strengthening the school's instructional program;

     (e) Using data to inform instruction;

     (f) Establishing a safe and supportive school environment; and

     (g) Engaging families and communities.

[2013 c 159 § 2; 2010 c 235 § 112.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.020
Persistently lowest-achieving schools — Challenged schools — Identification — Criteria — Washington achievement index.

(1) Beginning in 2010, and each year thereafter through December 1, 2012, the superintendent of public instruction shall annually identify schools as one of the state's persistently lowest-achieving schools if the school is a Title I school, or a school that is eligible for but does not receive Title I funds, that is among the lowest-achieving five percent of Title I or Title I eligible schools in the state.

     (2) The criteria for determining whether a school is among the persistently lowest-achieving five percent of Title I schools, or Title I eligible schools, under subsection (1) of this section shall be established by the superintendent of public instruction. The criteria must meet all applicable requirements for the receipt of a federal school improvement grant under the American recovery and reinvestment act of 2009 and Title I of the elementary and secondary education act of 1965, and take into account both:

     (a) The academic achievement of the "all students" group in a school in terms of proficiency on the state's assessment, and any alternative assessments, in reading and mathematics combined; and

     (b) The school's lack of progress on the mathematics and reading assessments over a number of years in the "all students" group.

     (3)(a) Beginning February 1, 2014, and each February thereafter, the superintendent of public instruction shall annually identify challenged schools in need of improvement and a subset of such schools that are the persistently lowest-achieving schools in the state.

     (b) The criteria for determining whether a school is a challenged school in need of improvement shall be adopted by the superintendent of public instruction in rule. The criteria must meet all applicable federal requirements under Title I of the elementary and secondary education act of 1965 and other federal rules or guidance, including applicable requirements for the receipt of federal school improvement funds if available, but shall apply equally to Title I, Title I-eligible, and non-Title I schools in the state. The criteria must take into account the academic achievement of the "all students" group and subgroups of students in a school in terms of proficiency on the state assessments in reading or English language arts and mathematics and a high school's graduation rate for all students and subgroups of students. The superintendent may establish tiered categories of challenged schools based on the relative performance of all students, subgroups of students, and other factors.

     (c) The superintendent of public instruction shall also adopt criteria in rule for determining whether a challenged school in need of improvement is also a persistently lowest-achieving school for purposes of the required action district process under this chapter, which shall include the school's lack of progress for all students and subgroups of students over a number of years. The criteria for identifying persistently lowest-achieving schools shall also take into account the level of state or federal resources available to implement a required action plan.

     (d) If the Washington achievement index is approved by the United States department of education for use in identifying schools for federal purposes, the superintendent of public instruction shall use the approved index to identify schools under (b) and (c) of this subsection.

[2014 c 191 § 1; 2013 c 159 § 3; 2010 c 235 § 102.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.030
Required action districts — Recommendation for designation — Reconsideration — Designation — Notice.

(1) Beginning in January 2011, the superintendent of public instruction shall annually recommend to the state board of education school districts for designation as required action districts. A district with at least one school identified as a persistently lowest-achieving school according to the criteria established by the superintendent of public instruction under RCW 28A.657.020 shall be designated as a required action district. However, a school district shall not be recommended for designation as a required action district if the district was awarded a federal school improvement grant by the superintendent in 2010 or 2011 and for three consecutive years following receipt of the grant implemented a federal school intervention model at each school identified for improvement. The state board of education may designate a district that received a school improvement grant in 2010 or 2011 as a required action district if after three years of voluntarily implementing a plan the district continues to have a school identified as persistently lowest-achieving and meets the criteria for designation established by the superintendent of public instruction.

     (2) The superintendent of public instruction shall provide a school district superintendent with written notice of the recommendation for designation as a required action district by certified mail or personal service. A school district superintendent may request reconsideration of the superintendent of public instruction's recommendation. The reconsideration shall be limited to a determination of whether the school district met the criteria for being recommended as a required action district. A request for reconsideration must be in writing and served on the superintendent of public instruction within ten days of service of the notice of the superintendent's recommendation.

     (3) The state board of education shall annually designate those districts recommended by the superintendent in subsection (1) of this section as required action districts. A district designated as a required action district shall be required to notify all parents of students attending a school identified as a persistently lowest-achieving school in the district of the state board of education's designation of the district as a required action district and the process for complying with the requirements set forth in RCW 28A.657.040 through 28A.657.100.

[2013 c 159 § 4; 2010 c 235 § 103.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.040
Academic performance audits of lowest-achieving schools in required action districts — External review teams — Audit findings.

(1) The superintendent of public instruction shall contract with an external review team to conduct an academic performance audit of the district and each persistently lowest-achieving school in a required action district to identify the potential reasons for the school's low performance and lack of progress. The review team must consist of persons under contract with the superintendent who have expertise in comprehensive school and district reform and may not include staff from the agency, the school district that is the subject of the audit, or members or staff of the state board of education.

     (2) The audit must be conducted based on criteria developed by the superintendent of public instruction and must include but not be limited to an examination of the following:

     (a) Student demographics;

     (b) Mobility patterns;

     (c) School feeder patterns;

     (d) The performance of different student groups on assessments;

     (e) Effective school leadership;

     (f) Strategic allocation of resources;

     (g) Clear and shared focus on student learning;

     (h) High standards and expectations for all students;

     (i) High level of collaboration and communication;

     (j) Aligned curriculum, instruction, and assessment to state standards;

     (k) Frequency of monitoring of learning and teaching;

     (l) Focused professional development;

     (m) Supportive learning environment;

     (n) High level of family and community involvement;

     (o) Alternative secondary schools best practices; and

     (p) Any unique circumstances or characteristics of the school or district.

     (3) Audit findings must be made available to the local school district, its staff, the community, and the state board of education.

[2010 c 235 § 104.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.050
Required action plans — Development — Publication of guidelines, research, and models — Submission — Contents — Effect on existing collective bargaining agreements. (Effective until June 30, 2019.)

(1)(a) The local district superintendent and local school board of a school district designated as a required action district must submit a required action plan to the state board of education for approval. Unless otherwise required by subsection (3) of this section, the plan must be submitted under a schedule as required by the state board. A required action plan must be developed in collaboration with administrators, teachers, and other staff, parents, unions representing any employees within the district, students, and other representatives of the local community.

     (b) The superintendent of public instruction shall provide a district with assistance in developing its plan if requested, and shall develop and publish guidelines for the development of required action plans. The superintendent of public instruction, in consultation with the state board of education, shall also publish a list of research and evidence-based school improvement models, consistent with turnaround principles, that are approved for use in required action plans.

     (c) The school board must conduct a public hearing to allow for comment on a proposed required action plan. The local school district shall submit the plan first to the office of the superintendent of public instruction to review and approve that the plan is consistent with federal and state guidelines, as applicable. After the office of the superintendent of public instruction has approved that the plan is consistent with federal and state guidelines, the local school district must submit its required action plan to the state board of education for approval.

     (2) A required action plan must include all of the following:

     (a) Implementation of an approved school improvement model required for the receipt of federal or state funds for school improvement for those persistently lowest-achieving schools that the district will be focusing on for required action. The approved school improvement model selected must address the concerns raised in the academic performance audit and be intended to improve student performance to allow a school district to be removed from the list of districts designated as a required action district by the state board of education within three years of implementation of the plan. The required action plan for districts with multiple persistently lowest-achieving schools must include separate plans for each school as well as a plan for how the school district will support the schools collectively;

     (b) Submission of an application for federal or state funds for school improvement to the superintendent of public instruction;

     (c) A budget that provides for adequate resources to implement the model selected and any other requirements of the plan;

     (d) A description of the changes in the district's or school's existing policies, structures, agreements, processes, and practices that are intended to attain significant achievement gains for all students enrolled in the school and how the district intends to address the findings of the academic performance audit; and

     (e) Identification of the measures that the school district will use in assessing student achievement at a school identified as a persistently lowest-achieving school, which include closing the educational opportunity gap, improving mathematics and reading or English language arts student achievement, and improving graduation rates as defined by the office of the superintendent of public instruction that enable the school to no longer be identified as a persistently lowest-achieving school.

     (3)(a) For any district designated for required action, the parties to any collective bargaining agreement negotiated, renewed, or extended under chapter
41.59 or 41.56 RCW after June 10, 2010, must reopen the agreement, or negotiate an addendum, if needed, to make changes to terms and conditions of employment that are necessary to implement a required action plan. For any district applying to participate in a collaborative schools for innovation and success pilot project under RCW 28A.630.104, the parties to any collective bargaining agreement negotiated, renewed, or extended under chapter 41.59 or 41.56 RCW after June 7, 2012, must reopen the agreement, or negotiate an addendum, if needed, to make changes to terms and conditions of employment that are necessary to implement an innovation and success plan.

     (b) If the school district and the employee organizations are unable to agree on the terms of an addendum or modification to an existing collective bargaining agreement, the parties, including all labor organizations affected under the required action plan, shall request the public employment relations commission to, and the commission shall, appoint an employee of the commission to act as a mediator to assist in the resolution of a dispute between the school district and the employee organizations. Beginning in 2011, and each year thereafter, mediation shall commence no later than April 15th. All mediations held under this section shall include the employer and representatives of all affected bargaining units.

     (c) If the executive director of the public employment relations commission, upon the recommendation of the assigned mediator, finds that the employer and any affected bargaining unit are unable to reach agreement following a reasonable period of negotiations and mediation, but by no later than May 15th of the year in which mediation occurred, the executive director shall certify any disputed issues for a decision by the superior court in the county where the school district is located. The issues for determination by the superior court must be limited to the issues certified by the executive director.

     (d) The process for filing with the court in this subsection (3)(d) must be used in the case where the executive director certifies issues for a decision by the superior court.

     (i) The school district shall file a petition with the superior court, by no later than May 20th of the same year in which the issues were certified, setting forth the following:

     (A) The name, address, and telephone number of the school district and its principal representative;

     (B) The name, address, and telephone number of the employee organizations and their principal representatives;

     (C) A description of the bargaining units involved;

     (D) A copy of the unresolved issues certified by the executive director for a final and binding decision by the court; and

     (E) The academic performance audit that the office of the superintendent of public instruction completed for the school district in the case of a required action district, or the comprehensive needs assessment in the case of a collaborative schools for innovation and success pilot project.

     (ii) Within seven days after the filing of the petition, each party shall file with the court the proposal it is asking the court to order be implemented in a required action plan or innovation and success plan for the district for each issue certified by the executive director. Contemporaneously with the filing of the proposal, a party must file a brief with the court setting forth the reasons why the court should order implementation of its proposal in the final plan.

     (iii) Following receipt of the proposals and briefs of the parties, the court must schedule a date and time for a hearing on the petition. The hearing must be limited to argument of the parties or their counsel regarding the proposals submitted for the court's consideration. The parties may waive a hearing by written agreement.

     (iv) The court must enter an order selecting the proposal for inclusion in a required action plan that best responds to the issues raised in the school district's academic performance audit, and allows for the award of federal or state funds for school improvement to the district from the office of the superintendent of public instruction to implement an approved school improvement model. In the case of an innovation and success plan, the court must enter an order selecting the proposal for inclusion in the plan that best responds to the issues raised in the school's comprehensive needs assessment. The court's decision must be issued no later than June 15th of the year in which the petition is filed and is final and binding on the parties; however the court's decision is subject to appeal only in the case where it does not allow the school district to implement a required action plan consistent with the requirements for the award of federal or state funds for school improvement by the superintendent of public instruction.

     (e) Each party shall bear its own costs and attorneys' fees incurred under this statute.

     (f) Any party that proceeds with the process in this section after knowledge that any provision of this section has not been complied with and who fails to state its objection in writing is deemed to have waived its right to object.

     (4) All contracts entered into between a school district and an employee must be consistent with this section and allow school districts designated as required action districts to implement an approved school improvement model in a required action plan.

[2013 c 159 § 5; 2012 c 53 § 10; 2010 c 235 § 105.]

Notes:

     Expiration date -- 2013 c 159 § 5: "Section 5 of this act expires June 30, 2019." [2013 c 159 § 15.]

     Findings -- Intent -- Expiration date -- 2012 c 53: See RCW 28A.630.101 and 28A.630.109.

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.

     

28A.657.050
Required action plans — Development — Publication of guidelines, research, and models — Submission — Contents — Effect on existing collective bargaining agreements. (Effective June 30, 2019.)

(1)(a) The local district superintendent and local school board of a school district designated as a required action district must submit a required action plan to the state board of education for approval. Unless otherwise required by subsection (3) of this section, the plan must be submitted under a schedule as required by the state board. A required action plan must be developed in collaboration with administrators, teachers, and other staff, parents, unions representing any employees within the district, students, and other representatives of the local community.

     (b) The superintendent of public instruction shall provide a district with assistance in developing its plan if requested, and shall develop and publish guidelines for the development of required action plans. The superintendent of public instruction, in consultation with the state board of education, shall also publish a list of research and evidence-based school improvement models, consistent with turnaround principles, that are approved for use in required action plans.

     (c) The school board must conduct a public hearing to allow for comment on a proposed required action plan. The local school district shall submit the plan first to the office of the superintendent of public instruction to review and approve that the plan is consistent with federal and state guidelines, as applicable. After the office of the superintendent of public instruction has approved that the plan is consistent with federal and state guidelines, the local school district must submit its required action plan to the state board of education for approval.

     (2) A required action plan must include all of the following:

     (a) Implementation of an approved school improvement model required for the receipt of federal or state funds for school improvement for those persistently lowest-achieving schools that the district will be focusing on for required action. The approved school improvement model selected must address the concerns raised in the academic performance audit and be intended to improve student performance to allow a school district to be removed from the list of districts designated as a required action district by the state board of education within three years of implementation of the plan. The required action plan for districts with multiple persistently lowest-achieving schools must include separate plans for each school as well as a plan for how the school district will support the schools collectively;

     (b) Submission of an application for federal or state funds for school improvement to the superintendent of public instruction;

     (c) A budget that provides for adequate resources to implement the model selected and any other requirements of the plan;

     (d) A description of the changes in the district's or school's existing policies, structures, agreements, processes, and practices that are intended to attain significant achievement gains for all students enrolled in the school and how the district intends to address the findings of the academic performance audit; and

     (e) Identification of the measures that the school district will use in assessing student achievement at a school identified as a persistently lowest-achieving school, which include closing the educational opportunity gap, improving mathematics and reading or English language arts student achievement, and improving graduation rates as defined by the office of the superintendent of public instruction that enable the school to no longer be identified as a persistently lowest-achieving school.

     (3)(a) For any district designated for required action, the parties to any collective bargaining agreement negotiated, renewed, or extended under chapter 41.59 or 41.56 RCW after June 10, 2010, must reopen the agreement, or negotiate an addendum, if needed, to make changes to terms and conditions of employment that are necessary to implement a required action plan.

     (b) If the school district and the employee organizations are unable to agree on the terms of an addendum or modification to an existing collective bargaining agreement, the parties, including all labor organizations affected under the required action plan, shall request the public employment relations commission to, and the commission shall, appoint an employee of the commission to act as a mediator to assist in the resolution of a dispute between the school district and the employee organizations. Beginning in 2011, and each year thereafter, mediation shall commence no later than April 15th. All mediations held under this section shall include the employer and representatives of all affected bargaining units.

     (c) If the executive director of the public employment relations commission, upon the recommendation of the assigned mediator, finds that the employer and any affected bargaining unit are unable to reach agreement following a reasonable period of negotiations and mediation, but by no later than May 15th of the year in which mediation occurred, the executive director shall certify any disputed issues for a decision by the superior court in the county where the school district is located. The issues for determination by the superior court must be limited to the issues certified by the executive director.

     (d) The process for filing with the court in this subsection (3)(d) must be used in the case where the executive director certifies issues for a decision by the superior court.

     (i) The school district shall file a petition with the superior court, by no later than May 20th of the same year in which the issues were certified, setting forth the following:

     (A) The name, address, and telephone number of the school district and its principal representative;

     (B) The name, address, and telephone number of the employee organizations and their principal representatives;

     (C) A description of the bargaining units involved;

     (D) A copy of the unresolved issues certified by the executive director for a final and binding decision by the court; and

     (E) The academic performance audit that the office of the superintendent of public instruction completed for the school district.

     (ii) Within seven days after the filing of the petition, each party shall file with the court the proposal it is asking the court to order be implemented in a required action plan for the district for each issue certified by the executive director. Contemporaneously with the filing of the proposal, a party must file a brief with the court setting forth the reasons why the court should order implementation of its proposal in the final plan.

     (iii) Following receipt of the proposals and briefs of the parties, the court must schedule a date and time for a hearing on the petition. The hearing must be limited to argument of the parties or their counsel regarding the proposals submitted for the court's consideration. The parties may waive a hearing by written agreement.

     (iv) The court must enter an order selecting the proposal for inclusion in a required action plan that best responds to the issues raised in the school district's academic performance audit, and allows for the award of federal or state funds for school improvement to the district from the office of the superintendent of public instruction to implement an approved school improvement model. The court's decision must be issued no later than June 15th of the year in which the petition is filed and is final and binding on the parties; however the court's decision is subject to appeal only in the case where it does not allow the school district to implement a required action plan consistent with the requirements for the award of federal or state funds for school improvement by the superintendent of public instruction.

     (e) Each party shall bear its own costs and attorneys' fees incurred under this statute.

     (f) Any party that proceeds with the process in this section after knowledge that any provision of this section has not been complied with and who fails to state its objection in writing is deemed to have waived its right to object.

     (4) All contracts entered into between a school district and an employee must be consistent with this section and allow school districts designated as required action districts to implement an approved school improvement model in a required action plan.

[2013 c 159 § 6; 2010 c 235 § 105.]

Notes:

     Effective date -- 2013 c 159 § 6: "Section 6 of this act takes effect June 30, 2019." [2013 c 159 § 16.]

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.060
Required action plans — Approval or nonapproval by state board of education — Resubmission or reconsideration — Implementation.

A required action plan developed by a district's school board and superintendent must be submitted to the state board of education for approval. The state board must accept for inclusion in any required action plan the final decision by the superior court on any issue certified by the executive director of the public employment relations commission under the process in RCW 28A.657.050. The state board of education shall approve a plan proposed by a school district only if the plan meets the requirements in RCW 28A.657.050 and provides sufficient remedies to address the findings in the academic performance audit to improve student achievement. Any addendum or modification to an existing collective bargaining agreement, negotiated under RCW 28A.657.050 or by agreement of the district and the exclusive bargaining unit, related to student achievement or school improvement shall not go into effect until approval of a required action plan by the state board of education. If the state board does not approve a proposed plan, it must notify the local school board and local district's superintendent in writing with an explicit rationale for why the plan was not approved. Nonapproval by the state board of education of the local school district's initial required action plan submitted is not intended to trigger any actions under RCW 28A.657.080. With the assistance of the office of the superintendent of public instruction, the superintendent and school board of the required action district shall either: (1) Submit a new plan to the state board of education for approval within forty days of notification that its plan was rejected, or (2) submit a request to the required action plan review panel established under RCW 28A.657.070 for reconsideration of the state board's rejection within ten days of the notification that the plan was rejected. If federal or state funds for school improvement are not available, the plan is not required to be implemented until such funding becomes available. If federal or state funds for this purpose are available, a required action plan must be implemented in the immediate school year following the district's designation as a required action district.

[2013 c 159 § 7; 2010 c 235 § 106.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.070
Required action plan review panel — Membership — Duties — Timelines and procedures for deliberations.

(1) A required action plan review panel shall be established to offer an objective, external review of a request from a school district for reconsideration of the state board of education's rejection of the district's required action plan or reconsideration of a level two required action plan developed only by the superintendent of public instruction as provided under RCW 28A.657.105. The review and reconsideration by the panel shall be based on whether the state board of education or the superintendent of public instruction gave appropriate consideration to the unique circumstances and characteristics identified in the academic performance audit or level two needs assessment and review of the local school district.

     (2)(a) The panel shall be composed of five individuals with expertise in school improvement, school and school district restructuring, or parent and community involvement in schools. Two of the panel members shall be appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives; two shall be appointed by the president of the senate; and one shall be appointed by the governor.

     (b) The speaker of the house of representatives, president of the senate, and governor shall solicit recommendations for possible panel members from the Washington association of school administrators, the Washington state school directors' association, the association of Washington school principals, the educational opportunity gap oversight and accountability committee, and associations representing certificated teachers, classified school employees, and parents.

     (c) Members of the panel shall be appointed no later than December 1, 2010, but the superintendent of public instruction shall convene the panel only as needed to consider a school district's request for reconsideration. Appointments shall be for a four-year term, with opportunity for reappointment. Reappointments in the case of a vacancy shall be made expeditiously so that all requests are considered in a timely manner.

     (3)(a) In the case of a rejection of a required action plan, the required action plan review panel may reaffirm the decision of the state board of education, recommend that the state board reconsider the rejection, or recommend changes to the required action plan that should be considered by the district and the state board of education to secure approval of the plan. The state board of education shall consider the recommendations of the panel and issue a decision in writing to the local school district and the panel. If the school district must submit a new required action plan to the state board of education, the district must submit the plan within forty days of the board's decision.

     (b) In the case of a level two required action plan where the local school district and the superintendent of public instruction have not come to agreement, the required action plan review panel may reaffirm the level two required action plan submitted by the superintendent of public instruction or recommend changes to the plan that should be considered by the state board of education, the superintendent of public instruction, and the local school district. The state board of education shall consider the recommendations of the panel and issue a decision in writing to the local school district, the superintendent of public instruction, and the panel.

     (4) The state board of education and superintendent of public instruction must develop timelines and procedures for the deliberations under this section so that school districts can implement a required action plan within the time frame required under RCW 28A.657.060.

[2013 c 159 § 8; 2010 c 235 § 107.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.080
Redirecting Title I funds based on academic performance audit findings.

The state board of education may direct the superintendent of public instruction to require a school district that has not submitted a final required action plan for approval, or has submitted but not received state board of education approval of a required action plan by the beginning of the school year in which the plan is intended to be implemented, to redirect the district's Title I funds based on the academic performance audit findings.

[2010 c 235 § 108.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.090
Required action plans — Implementation — Technical assistance and funds — Progress report.

A school district must implement a required action plan upon approval by the state board of education. The office of the superintendent of public instruction must provide the required action district with technical assistance and federal or state funds for school improvement, if available, to implement an approved plan. The district must submit a report to the superintendent of public instruction that provides the progress the district is making in meeting the student achievement goals based on the state's assessments, identifying strategies and assets used to solve audit findings, and establishing evidence of meeting plan implementation benchmarks as set forth in the required action plan.

[2013 c 159 § 9; 2010 c 235 § 109.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.100
Required action districts — Progress reports — Release from designation — Assignment to level two of the required action process.

(1) The superintendent of public instruction must provide a report twice per year to the state board of education regarding the progress made by all school districts designated as required action districts.

     (2) The superintendent of public instruction must recommend to the state board of education that a school district be released from the designation as a required action district after the district implements a required action plan for a period of three years; has made progress, as defined by the superintendent of public instruction using the criteria adopted under RCW
28A.657.020 including progress in closing the educational opportunity gap; and no longer has a school within the district identified as persistently lowest-achieving. The state board shall release a school district from the designation as a required action district upon confirmation that the district has met the requirements for a release.

     (3) If the state board of education determines that the required action district has not met the requirements for release after at least three years of implementing a required action plan, the board may recommend that the district remain in required action and submit a new or revised plan under the process in RCW 28A.657.050, or the board may direct that the school district be assigned to level two of the required action process as provided in RCW 28A.657.105. If the required action district received a federal school improvement grant for the same persistently lowest-achieving school in 2010 or 2011, the board may direct that the school district be assigned to level two of the required action process after one year of implementing a required action plan under this chapter if the district is not making progress. Before making a determination of whether to recommend that a school district that is not making progress remain in required action or be assigned to level two of the required action process, the state board of education must submit its findings to the education accountability system oversight committee under RCW 28A.657.130 and provide an opportunity for the oversight committee to review and comment.

[2013 c 159 § 10; 2010 c 235 § 110.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.105
Required action process — Level two schools and plans.

(1) School districts assigned by the state board of education to level two of the required action process under this chapter are those with one or more schools that have remained as persistently lowest-achieving for more than three years and have not demonstrated recent and significant improvement or progress toward exiting persistently lowest-achieving status, despite implementation of a required action plan.

     (2) Within ninety days following assignment of a school district to level two of the required action process, the superintendent of public instruction shall direct that a needs assessment and review be conducted to determine the reasons why the previous required action plan did not succeed in improving student achievement.

     (3)(a) Based on the results of the needs assessment and review, the superintendent of public instruction shall work collaboratively with the school district board of directors to develop a revised required action plan for level two.

     (b) The level two required action plan must explicitly address the reasons why the previous plan did not succeed and must specify the interventions that the school district must implement, which may include assignment or reassignment of personnel, reallocation of resources, use of specified curriculum or instructional strategies, use of a specified school improvement model, or any other conditions determined by the superintendent of public instruction to be necessary for the level two required action plan to succeed, which conditions shall be binding on the school district. The level two required action plan shall also include the specific technical assistance and support to be provided by the office of the superintendent of public instruction, which may include assignment of school improvement specialists to have a regular on-site presence in the school and technical assistance provided through the educational service district. Individuals assigned as on-site school improvement specialists must have demonstrated experience in school turnaround and cultural competence.

     (c) The level two required action plan must be submitted to the state board of education for approval.

     (4) If the superintendent of public instruction and the school district board of directors are unable to come to an agreement on a level two required action plan within ninety days of the completion of the needs assessment and review conducted under subsection (2) of this section, the superintendent of public instruction shall complete and submit a level two required action plan directly to the state board of education for approval. The school district board of directors may submit a request to the required action plan review panel established under RCW
28A.657.070 for reconsideration of the superintendent's level two required action plan within ten days of the submission of the plan to the state board of education. After the state board of education considers the recommendations of the required action plan review panel, the decision of the board regarding the level two required action plan is final and not subject to further reconsideration.

     (5) If changes to a collective bargaining agreement are necessary to implement a level two required action plan, the parties must reopen the agreement, or negotiate an addendum, using the process outlined under RCW 28A.657.050. If the level two required action plan is developed by the superintendent of public instruction under subsection (4) of this section, a designee of the superintendent shall participate in the discussions among the parties to the collective bargaining agreement.

     (6) While a school district is assigned to level two of the required action process under this chapter, the superintendent of public instruction is responsible and accountable for assuring that the level two required action plan is implemented with fidelity. The superintendent of public instruction shall defer to the school district board of directors as the governing authority of the school district and continue to work in partnership with the school district to implement the level two required action plan. However, if the superintendent of public instruction finds that the level two required action plan is not being implemented as specified, including the implementation of any binding conditions within the plan, the superintendent may direct actions that must be taken by school district personnel to implement the level two required action plan or the binding conditions. If necessary, the superintendent of public instruction may exercise authority under RCW 28A.505.120 regarding allocation of funds.

     (7) The superintendent of public instruction shall include in the budget estimates and information submitted to the governor under RCW 28A.300.170 a request for sufficient funds to support implementation of the level two required action plans established under this section.

     (8) The superintendent of public instruction must recommend to the state board of education that a school district be released from assignment to level two of the required action process after the district implements the level two required action plan for a period of three years; has made progress, as defined by the superintendent of public instruction using the criteria established under RCW 28A.657.020; and no longer has a school within the district identified as persistently lowest-achieving. The state board of education shall release a school district from the level two assignment upon confirmation that the school district has met the requirements for a release.

[2013 c 159 § 11.]




28A.657.110
Accountability framework for system of support for challenged schools — Washington achievement index — Recognition of schools for exemplary performance — Use of state system to replace federal accountability system.

(1) By November 1, 2013, the state board of education shall propose rules for adoption establishing an accountability framework that creates a unified system of support for challenged schools that aligns with basic education, increases the level of support based upon the magnitude of need, and uses data for decisions. The board must seek input from the public and interested groups in developing the framework. Based on the framework, the superintendent of public instruction shall design a comprehensive system of specific strategies for recognition, provision of differentiated support and targeted assistance, and, if necessary, requiring intervention in schools and school districts. The superintendent shall submit the system design to the state board of education for review. The state board of education shall recommend approval or modification of the system design to the superintendent no later than January 1, 2014, and the system must be implemented statewide no later than the 2014-15 school year. To the extent state funds are appropriated for this purpose, the system must apply equally to Title I, Title I-eligible, and non-Title I schools in the state.

     (2) The state board of education shall develop a Washington achievement index to identify schools and school districts for recognition, for continuous improvement, and for additional state support. The index shall be based on criteria that are fair, consistent, and transparent. Performance shall be measured using multiple outcomes and indicators including, but not limited to, graduation rates and results from statewide assessments. The index shall be developed in such a way as to be easily understood by both employees within the schools and school districts, as well as parents and community members. It is the legislature's intent that the index provide feedback to schools and school districts to self-assess their progress, and enable the identification of schools with exemplary performance and those that need assistance to overcome challenges in order to achieve exemplary performance.

     (3) The state board of education, in cooperation with the office of the superintendent of public instruction, shall annually recognize schools for exemplary performance as measured on the Washington achievement index. The state board of education shall have ongoing collaboration with the educational opportunity gap oversight and accountability committee regarding the measures used to measure the closing of the achievement gaps and the recognition provided to the school districts for closing the achievement gaps.

     (4) In coordination with the superintendent of public instruction, the state board of education shall seek approval from the United States department of education for use of the Washington achievement index and the state system of differentiated support, assistance, and intervention to replace the federal accountability system under P.L. 107-110, the no child left behind act of 2001.

     (5) The state board of education shall work with the education data center established within the office of financial management and the technical working group established in RCW
28A.290.020 to determine the feasibility of using the prototypical funding allocation model as not only a tool for allocating resources to schools and school districts but also as a tool for schools and school districts to report to the state legislature and the state board of education on how the state resources received are being used.

[2013 c 159 § 12; 2010 c 235 § 111; 2009 c 548 § 503. Formerly RCW 28A.305.225.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.

     Intent -- 2009 c 548: See RCW 28A.150.1981.

     Finding -- 2009 c 548: See note following RCW 28A.410.270.

     Intent -- Finding -- 2009 c 548: See note following RCW 28A.305.130.




28A.657.120
Rules.

The superintendent of public instruction and the state board of education may each adopt rules in accordance with chapter 34.05 RCW as necessary to implement this chapter.

[2010 c 235 § 113.]

Notes:

     Finding -- 2010 c 235: See note following RCW 28A.405.245.




28A.657.130
Education accountability system oversight committee — Membership — Duties — Reports.

(1) The education accountability system oversight committee is established to provide ongoing monitoring of the outcomes of the comprehensive system of recognition, support, and intervention for schools and school districts established under this chapter.

     (2) The oversight committee shall be composed of the following members:

     (a) Two members from each of the largest caucuses of the house of representatives, to be appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives;

     (b) Two members from each of the largest caucuses of the senate, to be appointed by the president of the senate;

     (c) Two members appointed by the governor; and

     (d) One nonlegislative member of the educational opportunity gap oversight and accountability committee.

     (3) The oversight committee shall choose a chair from among its membership who shall serve as chair for no more than one consecutive year.

     (4) The committee shall:

     (a) Monitor the progress and outcomes of the education accountability system established under this chapter, including but not limited to the effectiveness in improving student achievement of the tiered system of assistance and intervention provided to challenged schools in need of improvement, persistently lowest-achieving schools in required action districts, and level two required action districts;

     (b) Review and make recommendations to the state board of education regarding the proposed assignment of a required action district to level two of the required action process under RCW
28A.657.105;

     (c) Make recommendations to the state board of education, the superintendent of public instruction, the governor, and the legislature as necessary if the oversight committee finds that changes to the accountability system should be made; and

     (d) Report biennially to the education committees of the legislature.

     (5) Staff support for the oversight committee must be provided by the senate committee services and the house of representatives office of program research.

     (6) Legislative members of the oversight committee may be reimbursed for travel expenses in accordance with RCW 44.04.120. Nonlegislative members are entitled to be reimbursed for travel expenses in accordance with RCW 43.03.050 and 43.03.060.

[2013 c 159 § 13.]