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Guidance for Private School Approval Applications

This notice provides information regarding the Fire and Health and Safety Inspections questions on the private school application for approval for the 2019-2020 school year (due April 8, 2019).

The requirement for fire, health and safety that previously-approved schools have certified in their past applications is:

“The physical facilities of the school are adequate to meet the program offered, and all school facilities and practices are in substantial compliance with reasonable health and fire safety standards, as substantiated by current inspection reports of appropriate health and fire safety officials which are on file in the chief administrator’s office.” WAC 180-90-160(1)(f)

There is no time limit on inspections, although many schools use an inspection schedule of once every three years. Generally, fire inspections are provided by officials from the fire district in which the school is located, and the safety inspections are provided by a county or city official.

We have received a number of questions from schools concerning the safety inspection, and there appears to be confusion about this question and this part of the law. For this year’s application please upload one of the following for the Safety Inspection question:

  1. Documentation of a safety Inspection from a city or county official.
  2. If your school houses a licensed childcare facility, documentation of state licensing for the facility.
  3. If your school has been accredited, please indicate in a statement from you that the accreditation addressed health and safety standards.
  4. If your school has a kitchen facility, documentation of a food safety inspection.
  5. A statement from you explaining why you do not have safety inspection documentation. Please provide information that may be useful for us to understand your situation and improve the application process, while minimally verifying a safe school facility. This statement will be used for information only and will not affect your school’s re-approval by the State Board of Education.
    1. Your county/city does not provide this type of inspection service.
    2. Your understanding of the facilities requirement was met through the inspection by the fire district official.
    3. Any additional relevant information.