By League of Education Voters Policy Team

The Washington state legislature has passed its 2019-2021 biennial budget. See how it compares with the Senate, House, and Governor Inslee’s budget proposals.

Early Childhood Education

Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP) $20 million – to expand ECEAP

  • 509 slots in 2020
  • 662 slots in 2021

88% are full day, the rest are extended day

$15 million ECEAP rate increase

  • 6% rate increase starting July 2019
Child Care Centers $23 million – For tiered reimbursement rate increases for qualifying child care centers participating in Early Achievers


Local Effort Assistance (LEA) $61 million – Increase from changes to Local Effort Assistance including:

  • Creating a provision that will direct additional LEA funding to Vancouver and Evergreen school districts in Clark County
  • Increasing the LEA threshold by $50 per student
  • Enabling tribal compact schools to receive LEA funds
Local Education Levy Lids
(Does not generate additional state funding)
Levy lids are:

  • $3,000 per student or $2.50 per $1,000 of assessed value whichever is lower for districts over 40,000 students
  • $2,500 per student or $2.50 per $1,000 of assessed value whichever is lower for districts under 40,000 students
School Counselors $1.8 million to increase guidance counselor staffing at elementary and middle schools receiving targeted supports as part of the Washington School Improvement Framework 
Career Connected Learning $11.5 million for career connected learning initiatives (House Bill 2158)
Special Education Funding Multiplier $77 million

  • Multiplier will increase to .995 (up from .9609)

2020-21 and beyond

  • Tiered multiplier will be implemented
  • 1.0075 for students receiving special education services in a general education setting 80% or more of the day
  • .995 for students receiving special education services in a general education setting less than 80% of the day
  • The 13.5% funded enrollment cap for special education is restructured, but maintained with the transition to a tiered multiplier funding system
Special Education Safety Net $49 million – To lower the safety net eligibility threshold to 2.3x the average per-student expenditure to increase eligibility for reimbursement opportunities
Special Education Professional Development (PD) $25 million – One-time investment – Directed to the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) to support PD in inclusionary practices for classroom teachers to support students with individualized educational programs (IEPs)
School Safety and Student Well-Being $2.5 million – To establish state school safety center at OSPI, convene a school safety and student well-being workgroup, and provide 1.0 full-time employee (FTE) at each educational service district (ESD) for regional school safety

$100,000 — Grant program to provide training for school resources officers, administered by OSPI

Social Emotional Learning (SEL) $400,000 – To establish a Social Emotional Learning Committee and establish SEL standards for K-12 staff

Higher Education

Financial Aid $163 million – for Washington College Grant (formerly State Need Grant)

  • Waitlist of eligible students reduced by 1/3 in 2019-20, waitlist eliminated by 2020-21
Guided Pathways $32 million – To expand guided pathways to all community and technical colleges to help develop clear pathways for students as they seek a postsecondary credential
Higher Education Funding $62 million – To increase base funding for state higher education institutions
Student Supports $1.5 million – To fund an emergency grant aid program to reduce barriers to postsecondary persistence (House Bill 1893)

$550,000 – To support a pilot program to assist students experiencing homelessness and students who were in the foster care system when they graduated from high school (Senate Bill 5800)

College Affordability $2 million – For a student loan refinancing program


2019-2021 Biennial Budget Summary (PDF)


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