2024 AESD Legislative Agenda
The Association of Educational Service Districts (AESD) Network, comprised of Washington’s nine Educational Service Districts (ESDs), provide student and educator services focused on learning. This year, our legislative goal is sustaining the AESD Network’s student support systems.
STUDENT SAFETY & WELL-BEING
Students are struggling with behavioral and mental health issues. In 2019, the Legislature invested in HB 1216, which established Regional School Safety Centers across all ESDs to help with initial training and support for students and schools. Additionally, we have used one-time federal funds to provide school-based behavioral and mental health services to students who need them most.
- MAINTAIN last year’s one-time expenditure to ensure continued school-based services to more than 2,000 students in 96 schools within 68 districts.
- EXPAND school-based services to approximately 50 additional school districts, prioritizing services to sites farthest from existing behavioral and mental health services.
- REMOVE barriers for ESDs and school districts accessing Medicaid for school-based services. The current system is not structured for school settings or for providing youth and adolescent care. And under the current state Medicaid Plan, adolescent therapists aren’t funded for full care.
TOTAL REQUEST: $10M/year
INTEGRATED INCLUSIONARY PRACTICES & MULTI-TIERED SYSTEMS OF SUPPORT
ESD teams help school and district leadership teams support all students — especially those with disabilities. In 2022, 140 schools engaged with an IPP coordinator. These schools experienced a 14.08 percentage point increase in the number of students with disabilities spending 80% to 100% of their day in the general education setting.
- RESTORE full funding. Funding is currently scheduled to end after the 2023-24 school year.
- EXPAND regional coaching and technical assistance for district leaders who need support creating inclusionary systems.
TOTAL REQUEST: $5.3M/year
SCHOOL DISTRICT SUPPORT
The AESD Network urges the Legislature to fully resource school districts to serve every student. This includes greater investments in special education; student transportation systems; and appropriate, realistic staffing levels and operational support.