In 2019 Second Substitute Senate Bill 5800 established pilot programs to provide assistance and accommodations to students experiencing homelessness and to students who were in foster care when they graduated high school.
The State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (State Board) established pilot programs at four college districts, with two on each side of the Cascade Mountains. The pilot sites are Edmonds College, South Puget Sound Community College, Walla Walla Community College and Yakima Valley College.
The Student Achievement Council (Council) chose Eastern Washington University and Western Washington University to establish pilot programs.
The participating community and technical colleges (CTCs) and four-year institutions must provide accommodations to homeless students and students who were in foster care at high school graduation. The accommodations may include:
Each pilot program site took a different approach to identifying students, such as leveraging existing programs, conducting surveys and questionnaires, and partnering with local community organizations.
The CTCs and four-year institutions may also establish plans to develop surplus property for affordable housing.
The pilot programs must provide a joint report to the Legislature by December 1, 2023. The pilot programs expire July 1, 2023.
The pilot programs are expanded to include an additional four CTCs and an additional two four-year institutions, equally divided to institutions on each side of the Cascade Mountains.
The pilot program's expiration date is extended to July 1, 2024.