SHB 2288

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.

As of February 23, 2018

Title: An act relating to the Washington history day program.

Brief Description: Concerning the Washington history day program.

Sponsors: House Committee on Education (originally sponsored by Representatives Kagi, Harris, Dolan, Stonier, Goodman, Tarleton, Bergquist, Johnson, McBride, Fitzgibbon, Slatter, Vick, Lytton, Hargrove, Macri, Kloba, Appleton, Ortiz-Self, Ormsby, Lovick and McCaslin).

Brief History: Passed House: 2/14/18, 98-0.

Committee Activity: Early Learning & K-12 Education: 2/22/18.

Brief Summary of First Substitute Bill

  • Transfers administration and coordination of the Washington History Day Program from the Washington State Historical Society (WSHS) to the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), effective July 1, 2018.

  • Specifies that the Program must be operated as a partnership between WSHS, OSPI, and private parties interested in providing funding and in-kind support.

  • Creates a new non-appropriated Washington History Day Account in the custody of the Washington State treasurer.


Staff: Susan Mielke (786-7422)

Background: WSHS. WSHS, a tax-exempt nonprofit organization, has the statutory duty as a trustee of the state to collect, catalog, and preserve, historical materials that illustrate the history of the state of Washington. Additionally, WSHS's duties include operating state museums, conducting educational activities and celebrations of significant events in the history of Washington, and engaging in fund-raising. WSHS is governed by a board of trustees that includes the Superintendent of Public Instruction.

National History Day and Washington History Day. The National History Day organization (NHD), a nonprofit organization established in 1974, offers year-long academic programs for students in grades 6–12 that have a focus on historical research. In addition to providing curriculum materials and professional development opportunities for teachers, the NHD operates the National History Day Contest, which is the final stage of a series of contests beginning at the local and state/affiliated levels. Washington participates as an affiliate through the Washington History Day Program (Program). The Program is administered by WSHS. According to WSHS, more than 8000 students participate in the Program each year.

OSPI. There is a social studies office within OSPI that provides guidance for the development and implementation of the Washington social studies student learning standards and classroom-based assessments.

Summary of Bill: Responsibility for administering the Program is transferred from WSHS to OSPI effective July 1, 2018. OSPI is responsible for the administration and coordination of the Program, including providing necessary staff support, subject to funds appropriated for this specific purpose.

Although OSPI has administrative and coordination duties, the Program must be operated as a partnership between OSPI, WSHS, and private parties interested in providing funding and in-kind support. WSHS, in coordination with OSPI, must promote the Program and provide access and support for students who are conducting historical research of Washington documents and commentary.

A non-appropriated Washington History Day Account is created in the custody of the Washington State treasurer. All monies from public and private sources to support Washington History Day must be deposited into the account. Only OSPI or OSPI's designee may authorize expenditures from the account.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Available. New fiscal note requested on February 21, 2018.

Creates Committee/Commission/Task Force that includes Legislative members: No.

Effective Date: Ninety days after adjournment of session in which bill is passed.

Staff Summary of Public Testimony: PRO: This program provides a terrific learning experience for students and should be available as part of the state's educational process. That is why we are moving it to OSPI but maintaining the connection with the Washington Historical Society. If funding is provided it can eliminate the fees to participate in this program.

Persons Testifying: PRO: Representative Ruth Kagi, Prime Sponsor; Randolph Schnabel, Washington History Day; Kitty Merrifield, Colonial Dames; James Sawatzki, History Day Advisory Board; Carol Coe, Office of Superintenedent of Public Instruction.

Persons Signed In To Testify But Not Testifying: No one.