S-4087.1  _______________________________________________


                         SENATE BILL 6574



State of Washington      55th Legislature     1998 Regular Session


By Senators Johnson, Stevens, Wood, Winsley, Deccio, Schow, Oke, McCaslin, Rossi, Hochstatter, Swecker, Sellar, Morton, McDonald and Roach


Read first time 01/21/98.  Referred to Committee on Education.

Authorizing learning materials to be loaned to private school students.

    AN ACT Relating to the learning materials loan program; adding a new section to chapter 28A.195 RCW; creating a new section; making an appropriation; and providing an effective date.




    NEW SECTION.  Sec. 1.  The legislature, in fulfilling its role as stated in the state Constitution, namely, that "It is the paramount duty of the state to make ample provision for the education of all children residing within its borders...", finds that families with children enrolled in approved private schools are an integral part of fulfilling the state's educational mission.

    The legislature further recognizes that a significant percentage of students attend approved private schools and frequently move between the state's publicly and privately funded schools.  The parents of these children are subject to taxes and levies to fulfill the education provided through our common schools.  In addition, these parents pay for student learning materials their child uses in the approved private school that would be free of additional charge in the common school.  In acknowledgement of this additional burden and in recognizing the role of our state's approved private schools in helping to fulfill the constitutional mandate to provide a basic education to our children, the legislature recognizes the need for equalization.  The sole purpose of this act is to assist children, not schools.


    NEW SECTION.  Sec. 2.  A new section is added to chapter 28A.195 RCW to read as follows:

    Students attending state-approved private schools may receive loaned learning materials from the local school district in which the private school is located.  To provide these materials to students, approved private schools shall submit annual requests for learning materials to the local school district in which the private school is located.  The local school district shall provide through a loan agreement the learning materials in accordance with the following guidelines:

    (1) Learning materials support shall not be limited, in any way, based on a student's economic status.

    (2) Learning materials eligible for loan shall include, but not be limited to:  Textbooks, workbooks, audio-visual aids, and technology made available, free of additional charge, for students in the state's public schools.

    (3) Only textbooks listed on the official adoption list of the local school district are eligible.

    (4) Loaned learning materials shall neither promote nor deter sectarian or religious activities of the private school.

    (5) No approved private school may be required to participate in learning materials support provided by the state.

    (6) Only students who attend state-approved private schools are eligible for learning materials support.

    (7) Student learning materials designed for religious instruction are not eligible for learning materials support.

    (8) No laws or rules may be added beyond those already in existence as of January 1, 1998, that have a direct or indirect impact on the autonomy of the private school as a result of the student's receipt of learning materials support.

    (9) The office of the superintendent of public instruction shall adopt guidelines for effective implementation of this section.

    (10) To assist the state, the office of the superintendent of public instruction may identify currently existing, nonsectarian, state-wide private school organizations to serve as the liaison with the state for eligible private schools whose students are receiving or are interested in receiving loaned learning materials.

    (11) Student learning materials loaned to students attending private schools under this section shall, at all times, be considered the property of the state of Washington.


    NEW SECTION.  Sec. 3.  This act takes effect September 1, 1998.


    NEW SECTION.  Sec. 4.  The sum of two million dollars, or as much thereof as may be necessary, is appropriated for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1999, from the general fund to the office of the superintendent of public instruction for the purposes of this act.


    NEW SECTION.  Sec. 5.  If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected.


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