SHB 1445

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

C 236 L 17

Synopsis as Enacted

Brief Description: Concerning dual language in early learning and K-12 education.

Sponsors: House Committee on Appropriations (originally sponsored by Representatives Ortiz-Self, Stambaugh, Santos, Orwall, Harris, Caldier, Springer, Appleton, Lytton, Condotta, Fey, Pollet, Goodman, Slatter, Bergquist, Macri, Doglio and Kagi).

House Committee on Education

House Committee on Appropriations

Senate Committee on Early Learning & K-12 Education

Senate Committee on Ways & Means


Public Schools. The common schools are the kindergarten through twelfth grade (K-12) schools maintained at public expense in each school district. Public schools include the common schools, charter schools, and other K-12 schools established by law and maintained at public expense, for example the state-tribal compact schools. There are four schools operated under a state-tribal education compact.

Dual Language Programs. A dual language (DL) program is an instructional model that provides content-based instruction to students in two languages, generally English and a target language other than English that is spoken in the local community, for example Spanish, Somali, Vietnamese, Russian, Arabic, native languages, or indigenous languages. The goal of DL programs is usually for the students, over a number of years of participation in the program, to become proficient and literate in both languages, while also meeting high academic standards in all subject areas. Typically, the programs begin at kindergarten or first grade and continue through elementary school, and, if possible, into middle school or high school.

A number of DL programs currently exist in school districts throughout Washington, including: Bellevue, Evergreen, Highline, Kennewick, Mount Vernon, North Shore, Pasco, Seattle, Vancouver, Wenatchee, and Yakima. These programs offer instruction in Spanish, Japanese, or Mandarin Chinese.

In 2015 the biennial operating budget provided the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) with funds to implement a K-12 DL expansion grant program for the purpose of building and expanding well-implemented, sustainable DL programs. Two-year grants were awarded to five school districts. The Bethel, Selah, and Mabton school districts were awarded $50,000 each per year for two years to develop and expand their newly implemented DL programs with the guidance of the mentor districts. The Wenatchee school district was awarded $30,000 per year for two years to mentor the Selah and Mabton school districts. The Bellevue school district was awarded $20,000 per year for two years to mentor the Bethel school district.

Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program. The state preschool program is called the Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP). The stated goal of the ECEAP is to help ensure children enter kindergarten ready to succeed. Children are eligible for ECEAP if they are from families with annual incomes at or below 110 percent of the federal poverty level—$26,730 for a family of four, qualify for school district special education services, or have developmental or environmental risk factors that could affect school success. Although the ECEAP prioritizes children who are 4 years old, children who are 3 years old are also eligible for the program.

Approved ECEAPs receive state-funded support through the Department of Early Learning (DEL). Public or private organizations, including school districts, community and technical colleges, local governments, and nonprofit organizations may contract with the DEL to become an ECEAP provider.

Dual Language Teachers. The Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB), a 13-member board, establishes the policies and requirements for the preparation and certification of educators, including approval of endorsements. An endorsement is the subject area in which a certified educator is authorized to teach, along with designated grade levels for that area. There are approximately 40 endorsements in Washington, not including a large number of career and technical education endorsements. In addition to subjects such as math, science, English, and history, there are approved endorsements in bilingual education and English learners (EL), both for all grade levels. In the 2014-15 school year, the PESB-approved teacher preparation programs had four new teachers complete the bilingual education endorsement and 186 complete the EL endorsement.

Recruiting Washington Teachers Program. The Recruiting Washington Teachers program was established by the Legislature in 2007 to recruit and provide training and support for high school students to enter the teaching profession. The program is administered by the PESB. The program consists of the following components:


K-12 Dual Language Grant Program. The K-12 DL grant program is created to grow capacity for high quality DL programs in the common schools and in state-tribal compact schools. The OSPI must develop and administer the program.

For the purpose of the program, two-way DL programs begin with a balanced number of native and nonnative speakers of the target language so that both groups of students serve in the role of language modeler and language learner at different times, and one-way DL programs serve only nonnative English speakers.

By October 1, 2017, subject to funding by the Legislature, the OSPI must award two-year grants of up to $200,000 each through a competitive grant process to school districts or state-tribal compact schools proposing to: establish or expand a two-way DL program; or expand a one-way DL program in a school with predominantly EL students. The OSPI must provide a bonus of up to $20,000 to applicants proposing to establish a DL program in a target language other than Spanish. The grant money must be used for DL program start-up and expansion costs, for example staff training, teacher recruitment, and development and implementation of DL curriculum, but not for ongoing program costs.

The OSPI must identify criteria for awarding the grants, evaluate applicants, and award grant money. Minimum application requirements are specified, including a description of how the program will serve the applicant's EL population, the applicant's plan for student enrollment and outreach to families who speak the target language, and the applicant's commitment to, and plan for, sustaining a DL program beyond the grant period. The OSPI must notify school districts and state-tribal compact schools of the K-12 grant program and provide ample time for the application process.

The OSPI must, within existing resources, facilitate DL learning cohorts for school districts and state-tribal compact schools establishing or expanding DL program. The OSPI must also provide technical assistance and support.

Bilingual Educator Initiative. Beginning in the 2017-2019 biennium, the PESB must administer the bilingual educator initiative, which is a long-term program to recruit, prepare, and mentor bilingual high school students to become future bilingual teachers and counselors.

Subject to funding by the Legislature, pilot projects must be implemented in one or two school districts on each side of the crest of the Cascade mountains, where immigrant students are shown to be rapidly increasing. Districts selected by the PESB must partner with at least one two-year and one four-year college in planning and implementing the program. The PESB must provide oversight.

Participating school districts must implement programs that include the following components:

There must be a pipeline to college using two-year and four-year college faculty and consisting of continuation services for program participants, such as advising, tutoring, mentoring, financial assistance, and leadership. High school and college teachers and counselors must be recruited and compensated to serve as mentors and trainers for participating students.

In 2017 funds must be appropriated for the purposes described above.

After obtaining a high school diploma, students qualify to receive conditional loans to cover the full cost of college tuition, fees, and books. To qualify for funds, students must meet program requirements as developed by their local implementation team, which consists of staff from their school district and the partnering two-year and four-year college faculty.

In order to avoid loan repayment, students must:

Students who do not meet these repayment terms must repay all or part of the financial aid they receive for college unless students are recipients of funding provided through programs such as the state need grant program or the college bound scholarship program.

Report to the Legislature. By December 1, 2019, subject to funding by the Legislature, the OSPI and the PESB must submit a combined report to the Legislature that details the successes, best practices, lessons learned and outcomes of the K-12 DL grant program and the bilingual educator initiative. The grantees must work with the agencies to draft this report. The report must also describe how the K-12 education system has met the goals of the initiative grant program, and expanded their capacities to support DL models of instruction because of the act.

Dual Language in Early Learning. The DEL must work with community partners to support outreach and education for parents and families around the benefits of native language development and retention, as well as the benefits of DL learning. Native language means the language normally used by an individual or, in the case of a child or youth, the language normally used by the parents or family of the child or youth. Within existing resources, the DEL must create culturally responsive training and professional development resources on DL learning, such as supporting EL students, working in culturally and linguistically diverse communities, strategies for family engagement, and cultural responsiveness, and must support DL learning communities for teachers and coaches

Votes on Final Passage:







(Senate amended)




(House concurred)


July 23, 2017