OLYMPIA - Today, a bill that would connect universities with school districts to serve at-risk and low-achieving students in elementary schools passed the Legislature. The objective of House Bill 2799<http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?bill=2799> is to accelerate student achievement, and deepen the knowledge and skills of current and future educators. The bill now goes the governor for a final signature.
Through the five-year voluntary Collaborative Schools for Innovation and Success (CSIS) pilot project, approved public or private Colleges of Education and school districts select a low-performing elementary school and implement models of instruction and educator preparation. 'College of Education' is a higher education institution with Professional Educator Standards Board approved certification programs.
Sen. Rosemary McAuliffe, D-Bothell<http://www.sdc.wa.gov/senators/mcauliffe/>, chair of the Senate Early Learning and K-12 Education Committee<http://www.leg.wa.gov/senate/committees/EDU/Pages/default.aspx> offered the following statement, "Our universities are seeds of innovation, of research and best practices. Partnering with elementary schools and applying these best practices will help close the opportunity gap and improve student learning in our lowest performing schools."
Up to six school districts may enter an agreement with universities to apply to participate. The CSIS pilot project's aim is to help failing schools in the urban areas of western and eastern Washington.
State grants will be available for three of the CSIS pilot projects. Three other projects are authorized to participate without funding.