Lowry approves K-to-20 education network

TACOMA - Gov. Mike Lowry today signed into law Senate Bill 6705, which authorizes the establishment of a kindergarten-to-college telecommunications network in the state. The fiber-optic network will build upon the existing Washington Education Telecommunications System (WETS) to allow information links among public schools, higher education institutions and, eventually, other resources such as public libraries and government agencies.

"We have now gotten to the point where we can electronically link all the schools in the state to provide greater education opportunities for kids in rural or urban areas and college students at any of our state's institutions," Lowry said. "This is a major achievement and one which will place Washington as a national leader in education technology."

The law creates a planning process for the K-20 network that will be coordinated by a Telecommunications Oversight and Policy Committee (TOPC), including the governor, legislators from each of the four caucuses, the superintendent of public instruction, and other stakeholders. The state Information Services Board will prepare a phased technical plan for design and construction of the network, with TOPC directing timelines and fiscal appropriations.


For more information, contact the Governor's Communications Office at 360-753-6790.