Rep. Melanie Stambaugh introduces legislation to establish the Washington open education pilot grant program

Rep. Melanie Stambaugh has introduced legislation that would create a competitive grant program to encourage college faculty to accelerate the adoption of lower-cost, high-quality open educational resources. House Bill 2680 would establish the Washington open education pilot program at state universities, regional universities and The Evergreen State College, beginning in the 2016-17 academic year.

“The high cost of textbooks can be a significant barrier for students in our higher education institutions,” said Stambaugh, R-Puyallup. “The Legislature made historic reductions in tuition last year to ease the financial burden on our college students, but we must continue to do more. Providing open educational resources as an alternative to traditional textbooks is a positive step forward in the effort to reduce the costs of attending college.”

Open educational resources may include, but are not limited to: research articles, research data, laboratory activities, simulations, videos, open-ended inquiry activities, and any other educationally useful materials.

Hayley Hohman, president of the Washington Student Association, has expressed support for Stambaugh’s bill.

“This bill is important for our students and is one of our top legislative priorities,” said Hohman. “Textbook costs are a key part of college affordability, and we are dedicated to ensuring that no student need forgo course materials because they cannot afford them. We like this policy in particular because it maintains the quality of education while also ensuring all students have access to course materials.”

House Bill 2680, which has bipartisan support, has been referred to the House Higher Education Committee where it awaits a hearing.


Washington State House Republican Communications