Hot Topics
LanguagesA-Z IndexPrinter Friendly Image

 For media inquiries,
 please contact:


Email me Email me when this page is updated

Hot Topics

The OSPI Communications office publishes one- and two-page handouts called "Hot Topics” to provide an introduction to an education issue. Our intent is to begin with issues that people are talking about and then expand to other topics of interest. You are free to copy and distribute any Hot Topic, but please do not alter. If you have any questions, or would like to suggest a specific hot topic, please contact Nathan Olson, OSPI communications manager, at

Teacher and Substitute Shortage
As more teachers retire, fewer younger people are interested in becoming teachers. The in-state production of new teachers is significantly less than a decade ago. The problem will increase as we expand access to state-funded full-day kindergarten and reduce K–3 class sizes.
PDF Download

Privacy and Data
OSPI takes seriously its obligations to secure data systems and protect the privacy of students. Strict processes help safeguard the confidentiality and security of the data.
PDF Download

Teacher Investigation
More than 50,000 teachers work in Washington state. A very small fraction commit acts that call into question whether they should be reprimanded or have their certificate suspended or revoked. The process by which that occurs, as well as the possible outcomes, is described.
PDF Download

Education Facts
Current information about the number of students and teachers in the state, testing results, graduation rates and funding are given.
PDF Download

Common Core State Standards/Smarter Balanced Assessment
Washington uses the Common Core State Standards as our K-12 learning standards in English language arts and math. Smarter Balanced tests are one way to measure what students in grades 3-8 and 11 know and are able to do in those two subjects.
PDF Download

Washington Kindergarten Inventory of Developing Skills
Known as WaKIDS, the inventory is given to incoming kindergarten students to see where they are developmentally as they begin public school.
PDF Download

Open Education Resources Project
Developing classroom materials can be expensive. Thanks to the state Legislature, teachers can now use and develop Open Education Resources. The resources can be used free of charge and distributed widely, which could be a more efficient way for teachers to get those materials into students' hands.
PDF Download

McCleary v. Washington
In January 2012, the Washington state Supreme Court ruled that the state is not adequately funding basic education. The decision, McCleary v. Washington, also lays out a solution to the problem.
PDF Download

Federal budget cuts will affect Title I, special education, impact fees and Head Start money given to districts and schools.
PDF Download


   Updated 1/25/2016

Old Capitol Building, PO Box 47200, 600 Washington St. S.E., Olympia, WA    98504-7200    360-725-6000  TTY 360-664-3631
Contact Us    |    Site Info    |    Staff Only    |    Privacy Policy