Starting a Private School in Washington


Regulations, Resources, & Support

Our team has curated the best resources and information available about starting a private school in Washington. Enjoy!


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Regulations

We’ve curated the laws and regulations about starting a private school in Washington.


Resources

What resources and associations are available to help new education entrepreneurs?


Starting a School Guide

See what else you need to know about starting a private school. From your curriculum to your marketing, and everything in-between.

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Washington State Regulations


General Regulations


Washington State

  • There are no registration or licensing requirements. Accreditation is optional, but approval is required.

  • The Washington State Board of Education has assembled a page of detailed requirements for private schools.

  • The US Office of Innovation & Improvement has assembled a summary of regulations for private schools operating in Washington.

  • Instruction is considered home-based if it consists of planned and supervised instructional and related educational activities, including curriculum and instruction in the basic skills of occupational education, science, mathematics, language, social studies, history, health, reading, writing, and spelling, and the development of an appreciation of art and music.

  • The Washington Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction has no published requirements for school insurance — consult a professional for guidance in this area.


State Funding Sources & Support

Washington does not provide funding for private education.


Curriculum Requirements


Teacher Certification & Hiring

All classroom teachers must hold appropriate Washington state certification except those teaching religious courses, or courses for which no counterpart exists in the public schools.

Food Services / Lunch

In Washington, school lunch requirements, including funding for schools offering the National School Lunch Program, are managed by the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction.


Length of School Year

Students must attend school for 180 days per year.


Recordkeeping & Reports

Principals of private schools or superintendents of private school districts must file a statement each year with the superintendent of public instruction certifying that minimum requirements are being met.

Healthy & Safety Requirements

Students must provide immunization records or proof of exemption. Schools are required to file annual reports on students’ immunization history.


Transportation

Local school district boards may jointly make purchases with private schools for supplies, equipment, and services, including but not limited to school bus maintenance services, as long as the private schools pay in advance or provide a surety bond for their proportionate share of the costs involved.


Testing

Testing is optional for private school students.

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Washington State Resources


State & Regional Associations

Read the Ultimate Guide to Starting a Private School


We've put together one of the most comprehensive guides to starting a private school. Ready to open your school? Read our free guide!


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Guide Quick-Nav



Introduction to Starting a School

Introduction

We’ve developed these 10 topics to help you along the way. Take them all in at once, or start with the areas most relevant right now.


Creating Your School Identity

School Identity

There’s plenty you can do to develop your own brand, starting right from your personal ideals and goals for your school.


Creating Your School Curriculum

Curriculum

Our curriculum pages include ideas on where to go to find materials, and different associations and educational models you may want to consider.


Legal & Operating Requirements

Legal & Operating Requirements

You need to know the requirements at both the federal level and for your state. Here are the basic details for every state.


Introduction to Starting a School

Funding & Finance

Here we share ideas for possible funding sources, and ways you might be able to start with less than you thought necessary.


Creating Your School Identity

Business Plan & Budget

Having a plan for how you’ll operate and a budget to predict and allocate funds is critical for all businesses, schools included. We’ve pulled together resources here to help with both.


School Facilities

Facilities

What facilities are right for your school? We encourage new schools to get creative, and have compiled some considerations to take into account.


School Staffing

Staffing

How can you find and recruit the right talent for your school? What qualifications or certifications are required?


School Policies & Procedures

Policies & Procedures

Here we share ideas for possible funding sources, and ways you might be able to start with less than you thought necessary.


Marketing & Online Presence

Marketing & Online Presence

Having a plan for how you’ll operate and a budget to predict and allocate funds is critical for all businesses, schools included. We’ve pulled together resources here to help with both.


School Associations

Associations

What facilities are right for your school? We encourage new schools to get creative, and have compiled some considerations to take into account.