Washington Senate OKs Ybarra’s education bill
The Washington State Senate on April 12 approved legislation that would give universities and colleges more flexibility in admitting education students to their programs.
Rep. Alex Ybarra, R-Quincy, authored House Bill 1621, which would make adjustments to the basic skills assessment requirements for acceptance into teacher preparatory programs.
House Bill 1621 was approved unanimously in the House and with a vote of 42 to 2 in the Senate. The bill heads to the governor’s desk for approval and signature.
Ybarra, representing the 13th District, says the changes will encourage more candidates to enter the teaching profession.
“Many people looking to become teachers, especially those thinking of a career change, will now have a better chance at getting admitted into a college or university,” Ybarra said in a press release from House Republicans. “By removing barriers, we can attract more non-traditional students like para-educators or volunteer parents thinking about entering the teaching profession.”
Ybarra’s bill would still require applicants to take a basic skills assessment, as well as report their score to the Professional Educator Standards Board. However, a low result would not bar someone from being accepted into a program of study. Colleges and universities would be able to consider a broad range of qualifiers, including previous work experience, volunteerism, and other relevant skills, according to a press release.