Our Services and Policies

Our Services

We have created brief documents explaining what we do:

The Office of the Education Ombuds (OEO) provides the following free services:

  • Facilitates informal resolution of individual concerns about issues that affect K-12 students in Washington's public schools.
  • Provides public information, consultation, and referrals regarding the Washington State public education system.
  • Trains families, educators, and community-based professionals about the public education system, family and community engagement, and informal conflict resolution.
  • Produces publications and tools for community stakeholders translated into a variety of languages.
  • Collects and reports data annually regarding trends that we see in our data and policy recommendations that will best support the success of students of color, students with disabilities, and other students within the opportunity gap.
  • Collaborates with others to address systemic barriers for tackling the opportunity gap.
  • Conducts outreach to increase the scope and equity of our work and build community capacity.

You can also read about how we help families and schools resolve concerns in ArabicChineseRussianSpanishSomali, or Vietnamese.

OEO Policies

  • Any member of the public may request our informal conflict resolution services.   
  • Concerns brought to us must involve public K-12 students in Washington who are currently enrolled or eligible to be enrolled in or receive services..
  • Ombuds cannot intervene directly without written permission of parents/legal guardians and/or students who are currently enrolled or eligible to be enrolled in elementary or secondary public schools in the State of Washington. 
  • We will receive concerns in any language by phone, online, fax, or mail. 
  • Ombuds work primarily by phone, phone conferencing or video conferencing and are usually unable to attend meetings in person.
  • OEO does not replace existing public school complaint systems, or local, state, and federal grievance or appeal procedures, and does not provide legal advice or representation.
  • OEO maintains confidentiality around all records, materials, and information gathered in the course of providing services, unless disclosure is otherwise required by law.  To protect consumer privacy, OEO does not disclose any personally identifiable information in its data and reporting. 
  • OEO does not intervene with elected officials, private schools, universities, colleges, businesses, or preschools.
  • OEO does not conduct formal investigations or make findings on any issue, including complaints regarding allegations of professional misconduct. 
  • OEO's privacy notice explains what data is collected through our website, and what we do with it.