Legislative and Policy Advocacy

We work with legislators and policy makers to ensure that legislation in Olympia affecting schools and education is crafted with the particular needs of private and independent schools in mind.

Legislation and Policy Updates


Initiative 1000 ends 20 year ban on affirmative action in WA State

from Seattle Times on April 28, 2019  OLYMPIA — In a last-minute move, the Washington Legislature on Sunday night passed Initiative 1000, a measure that overturns the state’s 20-year-old, voter-approved ban on affirmative action. I-1000 repeals Initiative 200, a...

Holocaust education bill signed into WA State law

Friday April 19, 2019 - article in the Spokesman Review Schools in Washington will be “strongly encouraged” to teach students about the Holocaust under a bill signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee on Friday, with advocates pointing to a spike in hate crimes as...

Child care costs may skyrocket under new licensing standards

image Courtney Talak, The Daily NewsChild care providers in Southwest Washington are worried the cost for daycare will skyrocket under new state licensing standards focused on increasing staff qualifications. Under the new requirements, employees at...

First Legislative Update of 2019 for WA Private Schools

First Legislative Update of 2019 for WA Private Schools

The Legislative Session is in the second week and the feeling in Olympia is different than last year, which was a short and very focused session.  There is more time for productive discussion around priorities, the budget and how to best support education and early...

The future of Early Learning in WA State

Early Learning Programs report many issues of concern.  Many private schools that take children on Working Connections Subsidies are finding it impossible to continue to enroll low-income students due to the low subsidy rate offered by the State - often less than half...

Legal Seminar recap

WFIS reached out to the school law team at Karr Tuttle Campbell firm to host the first Private School Legal Seminar for schools in WA state in almost 10 years. Schools from the various constituency groups, members and non-members of WFIS, gathered…

About Our Work


WFIS brings together uniquely varied educational institutions to strengthen educational quality in Washington, while serving as the advocate and voice of independent schools. The private, independently funded school community of Washington State is comprised of over 500 approved schools serving a richly diverse population of more than 85,000 students. This diversity is reflected in the full spectrum of economic, cultural, familial, educational and religious traits of our enrolled families; families whose collective dual sacrifice as responsible tax payers and tuition contributor’s saves WA state over $800,000,000 annually.

WFIS is the only statewide forum for Washington’s non-public school community. We participate in all levels of collective educational dialogs to assure our schools’ input and perspective are utilized in educational policy agenda, while advocating for private school student access to all programs designed to enhance the quality of education in our state. In addition, we seek resolution in cases where local policy application may result in double standards or inequities.

FEDERAL -WFIS will work for seamless application of the new ESSA policies and programs which include strengthened provisions for private school student inclusion in all districts within the state. Our organization also supports legislative efforts around the country to provide school choice to all children.
STATE – WFIS ensures that private schools are included in state educational programs that benefit students while guarding against the infringement of government mandated policy.
LOCAL – WFIS hosts and participates in events and community engagement opportunities at the local level which foster collaboration amongst schools, students and the greater community.