The Washington State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPI) has unveiled his latest request for funding for programs for the next legislative session.

  SPI Reykdal wants signing bonuses, and changes to funding

Thursday, SPI Chris Reykdal unveiled the latest proposal he will make to the legislature in January during the 2023 legislative session, and it's raised some eyebrows. Part of a statement he released reads as follows:

"To support school districts in hiring high-quality educators in hard-to-fill positions and regions, OSPI’s proposal would provide a one-time, $10,000 hiring bonus to special education teachers; a one-time, $5,000 hiring bonus to instructional and administrative staff at eligible high-poverty schools; and annual bonuses for teachers and paraeducators endorsed in dual language and working in dual language education programs."

He also wants the legislature to change how funding is given to districts. Currently, the legislature uses what's called "regionalization factors" which allow additional increases in state funding by up to 18 percent. Reykdal says this method utilizes home values in the community.

Reykdal claims communities with lower values (less wealth) "struggle" to offer competitive salaries to recruit and keep teachers, so he wants the percentage dropped from 18 to 12 percent, and, he wants these formulas to be applied to entire counties instead of each individual district.

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There are a number of other financial and payroll incentives Reykdal wants the legislature to pass, this is the latest in a series of proposals for public education he will be pushing next January. To see more, click here. 

How much will this cost taxpayers? According to the latest report itself:

"The overall cost of this request is $3.15 billion for the 2023–25 biennium, and $3.7 billion for the 2025–27 biennium."

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