Navigation Top
AGO Logo Graphic
AGO Header Image
File a Complaint
Contact the AGO
AGO Opinions with Topic: SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION
AGO 1961 No. 2 >  January 17, 1961
OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - CONSTITUTIONALITY OF LEGISLATION MAKING SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION SUBORDINATE TO THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION
OFFICES AND OFFICERS ‑- STATE ‑- SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION ‑- CONSTITUTIONALITY OF LEGISLATION MAKING SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION SUBORDINATE TO THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION A statute providing that the state superintendent of public instruction shall be subordinate to the state board of education and be subject to its direction in matters pertaining to the public schools would be unconstitutional.
AGO 1990 No. 12 >  October 20, 1990
DISTRICTS - SCHOOLS - ATHLETIC PROGRAMS - EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - REGULATIONS
DISTRICTS--SCHOOLS--ATHLETIC PROGRAMS--EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT--SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION--REGULATIONS 1.  RCW 28A.85.020 and .030 provide that the Superintendent of Public Instruction shall develop regulations to eliminate sex discrimination in the public schools, but RCW 28A.85.020(3) provides that school districts may offer separate but equal athletic teams for each sex.  The Superintendent thus is not authorized to adopt the portions of WAC 392-190-025 and -035 that limit school districts' ability to provide or sponsor separate but equal athletic teams for males and females.  To have separate but equal athletic teams, however, school districts must comply also with constitutional restrictions.   2.  RCW 28A.85.020 and .030 provide that the Superintendent of Public Instruction shall develop regulations to eliminate sex discrimination in the public schools, but RCW 28A.85.020(4) provides that separation is permitted within physical education classes.  The Superintendent thus is not authorized to adopt the portions of WAC 392-190-050 that limit school districts' ability to provide separate but equal physical education classes for males and females.  To have separate but equal physical education classes, however, school districts must comply also with constitutional restrictions.    3.  RCW 28A.85.020 and .030 and WAC 392-190 may apply to the use of school district playing fields by private sports leagues.  The application of these statutes and administrative rules depends on the nature of the relationship between the school district and the private sports league.
AGO 1975 No. 1 >  January 8, 1975
OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION - SCHOOL DISTRICTS - DISCRIMINATION - EMPLOYMENT
OFFICES AND OFFICERS ‑- STATE ‑- SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION ‑- STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION ‑- SCHOOL DISTRICTS ‑- DISCRIMINATION ‑- EMPLOYMENT (1) Neither the superintendent of public instruction nor the state board of education has the authority under any existing statute or constitutional provision to formulate and implement a state‑wide [[statewide]] affirmative or corrective action policy for disadvantaged groups such as women or racial minorities which would be binding on all local school districts in their employment of personnel; under the supervisory authority granted to him by Article III, § 23 of the state constitution, however, the state superintendent of public instruction may require local school districts, in connection with their employment of personnel, to formulate and implement their own affirmative action policies for such disadvantaged groups, subject to such constitutional standards as may be applicable to those kinds of programs. (2) Such a requirement may be enforced by a mandamus action against any noncomplying school districts. (3) The state superintendent of public instruction has the authority to enforce federal affirmative action programs by refusing to disburse federal funds to noncomplying school districts.
AGO 1962 No. 173 >  October 9, 1962
OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - QUALIFICATIONS FOR OFFICE - POWER OF LEGISLATURE TO PRESCRIBE
OFFICES AND OFFICERS ‑- STATE ‑- SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION ‑- QUALIFICATIONS FOR OFFICE ‑- POWER OF LEGISLATURE TO PRESCRIBE The legislature does not have the authority to establish qualifications for the office of the state superintendent of public instruction in addition to those found in Article III, § 25, Amendment 31, of the Washington State Constitution.
AGO 1990 No. 1 >  January 9, 1990
AIDS - EDUCATION - HEALTH - SCHOOLS - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION
AIDS ‑- EDUCATION ‑- HEALTH ‑- SCHOOLS ‑- SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION 1.  RCW 28A.05.055 requires school districts to provide education on acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) at least once during each school year beginning with the 1988-89 school year.2.  If a school district elects to develop its own AIDS curricula, it need not complete the curricula prior to the beginning of the school year, so long as it is developed in time to provide AIDS education at least once during the school year.
AGO 1989 No. 7 >  March 31, 1989
SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - CREDIT FOR IN-SERVICE TRAINING - CERTIFICATED EMPLOYEES - SCHOOLS - RULES AND REGULATIONS
SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION ‑- RULES AND REGULATIONS ‑- SCHOOLS ‑- CERTIFICATED EMPLOYEES ‑- CREDIT FOR IN-SERVICE TRAINING WAC 392-121-260(3)(c) as adopted by the Superintendent of Public Instruction is invalid as inconsistent with state statute to the extent that it purports to allow permanent credit for in-service training in a manner inconsistent with the state‑wide salary allocation schedule adopted by the Legislature for common-school certificated employees.
AGO 1998 No. 6 >  March 9, 1998
SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - STATE CONSTITUTION - LEGISLATURE - SCHOOLS - EDUCATION
Authority of the Legislature to define powers and duties of the Superintendent of Public Instruction 1.  The Legislature has discretion to prescribe the specific duties of the Superintendent of Public Instruction and to create agencies and institutions to administer the state's public education system; however, it must respect the constitutional language granting the Superintendent "supervisory" power over the public school system. 2.  The public school system, for purposes of defining the constitutional "supervision" authority of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, includes the common school system of elementary, intermediate, and high schools, and would also include normal schools and technical schools if the Legislature were to create any. 3.  The Legislature may not "delegate" to another officer or agency the "supervision" authority of the Superintendent of Public Instruction over the public schools; however, with this restriction, the Legislature has broad discretion to create state and local agencies and institutions to administer the public education system, and to define their respective powers and duties.
AGLO 1982 No. 15 >  June 17, 1982
OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - ADMINISTRATIVE LAW - SCHOOLS
INTER-DISTRICT STUDENT TRANSFERS After July 1, 1982, the hearing contemplated by WAC 392-137-060, relating to the approval of inter-district student transfers by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, will have to be conducted by an administrative law judge in accordance with the provisions of chapter 34.12 RCW unless the hearing is conducted, instead, by the Superintendent of Public Instruction himself.
AGLO 1982 No. 28 >  December 16, 1982
OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - COMMISSION FOR VOCATIONAL EDUCATION - STATE BOARD FOR COMMUNITY COLLEGE EDUCATION - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - SCHOOLS
RESPONSIBILITY FOR VOCATIONAL EDUCATION (1) The 1975 Vocational Education Act establishes a trichotomous relationship between the Commission for Vocational Education, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction and the State Board for Community College Education whereby those three agencies share the responsibility and authority for directing public vocational education in the state.
AGLO 1975 No. 44 >  April 23, 1975
OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - DISTRICTS - SCHOOLS
REGULATION OF ASSOCIATED STUDENT BODY FUNDS (1) The state superintendent of public instruction may adopt a regulation pursuant to RCW 28A.58.115 defining the term "associated student body funds" in order to identify those moneys of an associated student body which are subject to school district budget laws and other state laws relating to school district funds, including, RCW 43.09.240 and RCW 28A.59.110. (2) The state superintendent of public instruction may also adopt a regulation under RCW 28A.58.115 authorizing school districts to establish one or more ASB petty cash funds into which limited amounts of ASB funds could be transferred from time to time from the school district treasury by warrants made payable to the order of the principal of the school involved as custodian of such fund.
AGLO 1973 No. 60 >  May 31, 1973
OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - SUPREME COURT DECISION WEISS V. BRUNO - FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY AND DISADVANTAGED STUDENTS
OFFICES AND OFFICERS ‑- STATE ‑- SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION ‑- SUPREME COURT DECISION WEISS V. BRUNO ‑- FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY AND DISADVANTAGED STUDENTS The Washington Supreme Court's decision in Weiss v. Bruno, 82 Wn.2d 199 (1973), renders action by the state board in implementation of chapter 81, Laws of 1973 (providing for state financial assistance to students attending private and public schools) unconstitutional.
AGLO 1974 No. 65 >  July 5, 1974
DISTRICTS - SCHOOLS - FUNDS - OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION
FAILURE TO CONDUCT SCHOOL FOR 180 DAYS (1) If a schools district fails to conduct school for at least 180 days by reason of a cause not constituting an "unforseen emergency" as defined in RCW 28A.41.170, the district must forfeit a pro rata portion of its annual entitlement of state apportionment funds under RCW 28A.41.130. (2) If the failure of a school district to conduct school for at least 180 days is occasioned by an "unforeseen emergency" as thus defined, the district will be eligible for its full annual entitlement of state apportionment funds if the state superintendent of public instruction has so provided by rules and regulations adopted pursuant to RCW 28A.41.170.
AGLO 1973 No. 106 >  November 13, 1973
OFFICES AND OFFICERS - STATE - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION - APPROPRIATIONS - CONTINUATION OF $40 PER MONTH SALARY INCREASE
OFFICES AND OFFICERS ‑- STATE ‑- SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION ‑- APPROPRIATIONS ‑- CONTINUATION OF $40 PER MONTH SALARY INCREASE To the extent that the funds appropriated by § 86, chapter 137, Laws of 1973, 1st Ex. Sess., for continuation of the $40 per month salary increase provided by chapter 8, Laws of 1973, for school district classified employees are sufficient for that stated purpose, they are to be distributed on the basis of the amount necessary for each district to continue such increase, independent of the substantive provisions of the school apportionment formula.
AGO 2009 No. 8 >  December 11, 2009
EDUCATION - PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM - RELIGION - SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION
Constitutional Implications Of Adding Early Learning To Statutory Definition Of Basic Education

1. The Legislature may create a basic education program of early learning that is limited to students who are at risk of educational failure.  However, article IX, section 1 of the Washington Constitution would preclude limiting such a program to students from low-income households, absent a showing that low family income is an accurate proxy for the risk of educational failure.  This would include showing that other students facing the risk of educational failure are not excluded based on family income.

Content Bottom Graphic
AGO Logo