BILL REQ. #:  S-0600.1 


State of Washington61st Legislature2009 Regular Session

By Senators Jacobsen and Shin

Read first time 01/16/09.   Referred to Committee on Higher Education & Workforce Development.

     WHEREAS, The Latino population is the fastest growing ethnic group in Washington State; and
     WHEREAS, The Latino population faces systemic, institutional, and social barriers in access to higher education evidenced by college enrollment rates; and
     WHEREAS, The abolishment of affirmative action in Washington State has removed methods of dealing with barriers to higher education facing the Latino community; and
     WHEREAS, Education is the most important function of the state of Washington and is essential to the economic health, cultural diversity, civic vitality, and political well-being of the state and the nation; and
     WHEREAS, There is significant evidence that citizens benefit by having an opportunity to access the education and training that will allow them to contribute to the healthy future of not only themselves and their families but also to the community at large; and
     WHEREAS, Latino educational achievement is an increasingly important benchmark for assessing the contributions of institutions of higher education to the economic and civic health of Washington State;
     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, By the Senate of the state of Washington, the House of Representatives concurring, That a joint select committee on Latino accessibility to higher education be established, in consultation with the Washington State commission on Hispanic affairs to:
     (1) Increase awareness throughout the educational pipeline about the challenges facing the Latino community, to close the generational information gap within the Latino community;
     (2) Close the generational information gap within the Latino community about the cost of and accessibility to higher education;
     (3) Investigate ways to provide an appropriate level of financial aid to help Latinos enroll in and graduate from Washington State institutions of higher education;
     (4) Improve articulation and communication between two-year and four-year institutions of higher education regarding higher education issues especially important to the Latino community; and
     (5) Develop and propose strategies for helping Latino students achieve at high academic levels;
     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That the committee consist of eight members, four members each selected by the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives; and
     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That the committee report its findings and recommendations to the legislature at the regular legislative session in 2011.

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