Parties pledge to work together on education money

SEATTLE — Education policy leaders from both political parties are pledging to work together to solve Washington’s public school budget issues.

About a week into the legislative session, Democrats and Republicans sent letters to each other and the government about starting a dialogue.

On top of their agenda is finding enough money to pay for court-ordered improvements in education spending. The state Supreme Court has found Washington is not meeting its constitutional duty to fully pay the cost of basic education.

Lawmakers and public policy experts say the Legislature needs to find as much as $5 billion in new money by the end of the 2017-18 school year. The Supreme Court has set an April 30 deadline for a legislative plan for how they will get there.

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