Big Lake, Alaska and The Susitna Valley News, Weather, Events, And More

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Friday, January 19 2018 @ 12:10 PM AKST


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The State Board of Education is Surveying the Public

Education and Local School NewsThe State Board of Education & Early Development, and the Department of Education & Early Development, are in the process of developing a long-term strategic plan. As part of this process, the State Board is inviting statewide stakeholders to provide input and perspective. Please take approximately 15-20 minutes to put thought and consideration into this survey. Your input into this process matters to our overall success in increasing student achievement and ultimately our state’s success. The survey will be open to receive your responses through Tuesday, August 11.

Survey is at
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State is seeking coaches to assist under - performing schools

Education and Local School NewsThe Alaska Department of Education & Early Development is seeking proposals from experienced Alaskan educators and administrators to share their expertise as State System of Support school improvement coaches.

As contractors of the department, the coaches work to assist under-performing schools improve instruction and student performance. The ideal coach must have Alaskan teaching or administrative experience and knowledge of current research and best practices in curriculum, assessment, instruction, supportive learning environment, professional development, and leadership.

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State Board of Education Adopts Regulations

Education and Local School NewsJUNEAU –The State Board of Education & Early Development, meeting June 4 and 5 in Fairbanks, adopted regulations related to student teaching, a bond reimbursement and grant review committee, and fees at the state library, archives, and museums.

The new student teaching regulation provides clear minimum expectations to guide teacher preparation programs that place student teachers in Alaska public schools.

The board established terms of office and procedures for filling vacancies on the department’s Bond Reimbursement and Grant Committee.

The board adopted increased and uniform fees for services provided by the Alaska State Library, the Alaska State Archives, and the Alaska State Museums.

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National Bike to School Day Wednesday, May 6th 2015

Education and Local School NewsThe Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities (ADOT&PF) Safe Routes to School program invites schools statewide to participate in this year’s National Bike to School Day. Students in communities across the nation will bike to school on Wednesday, May 6, 2015.

Bike to School Day is part of the celebration of National Bike Month. The event offers the opportunity for students to join together on a single day, to promote fun and healthy physical activities and practice safety as they bike and walk in their communities.

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Reminder-Houston High School Gun and Outdoor Show is this Weekend

Education and Local School NewsLots to see and do, all for a good cause.
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Education and Local School NewsFrom HMS: Register before May 1st and the fee is only $30 and you get a free Color-A-Thon t-shirt! You can also register the day of the event for $40 but shirts will not be available. So register early! Tell your friends! Click for more info
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Two New Members Join the State Board of Education

Education and Local School NewsJUNEAU –Governor Bill Walker’s appointments of Dr. Keith J. Hamilton of Soldotna and John T. Harmon of Palmer to the State Board of Education & Early Development have been confirmed by the legislature.

Dr. Hamilton holds a seat for the public at large. Mr. Harmon holds the seat for the Third Judicial District. Both members’ terms will expire March 1, 2020.

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State Board to Discuss Topics for Retreat

Education and Local School NewsThe State Board of Education & Early Development will meet by teleconference on April 13, starting at noon. The meeting will originate from the auxiliary boardroom at the Alaska Department of Education & Early Development, 801 West 10th Street in Juneau. The purpose is to hold a work session to discuss topics for a board retreat in June.

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Schools Get a Fast Start on the Alaska Measures of Progress

Education and Local School NewsAfter the first week of testing, 25.6% of students already had completed the Alaska Measures of Progress (AMP), Alaska’s new language arts and math assessments for students in grades 3-10. Another 9% had completed at least one section of the assessments. The five-week testing window runs from March 30 to May 1. About 73,245 students are expected to be tested.

“I am very pleased with how things went during this first week of testing,” said Alaska Education Commissioner Mike Hanley. “The school districts and the department have worked very hard to get students ready and, obviously, that hard work paid off.”

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State Board Adopts Four Regulations Packages

Education and Local School NewsThe State Board of Education & Early Development, meeting March 19 & 20 in Juneau, adopted regulations relating to the Alaska Performance Scholarship, assessments, administrator certificates, and certification fees.

Additionally, the board sent out for public comment proposed regulations on school and educator accountability, student teachers, the Bond Reimbursement and Grant Review Committee, and fees at the state libraries, archives and museums.

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State Board to Meet March 19 & 20 in Juneau

Education and Local School NewsThe State Board of Education & Early Development will meet on March 19 starting at 8:00 a.m., and March 20 starting at 8:30 a.m. at the first floor boardroom at 801 West 10th Street in Juneau. The public is invited to attend. For the meeting packet, see

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Margaret MacKinnon Named Acting Accountability Director

Education and Local School NewsJUNEAU–State Education Commissioner Mike Hanley has named Margaret MacKinnon acting Director of Assessment and Accountability. The director oversees the department’s implementation of state assessments, such as the new Alaska Measures of Progress, and the state’s school and district accountability system, including the Alaska School Performance Index.

Ms. MacKinnon has served the department for more than 30 years, including 25 years as a teacher in the former Alyeska Central School. She is a certified teacher and administrator in Alaska. She holds a bachelor of science degree in math education from the University of South Carolina, a master’s degree in education from Rutgers University in New Jersey, and an education leadership certificate from the University of Alaska Anchorage.

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State Board Seeks Public Comment on Proposed Regulation

Education and Local School NewsJUNEAU–The State Board of Education & Early Development, meeting by tele/videoconference Jan. 26, has sent out for public comment a proposed regulation that would allow school districts to request a waiver from required early literacy screenings for students in kindergarten and grade one.

The department requires these brief screenings of students in kindergarten, grade one, grade two, and in grade three for students who are struggling with reading. The department requires schools to share results with parents.

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Rummage Sale @ Houston Middle School

Education and Local School NewsThere will be a Rummage Sale at Houston Middle School on February 7th from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. There will be baked goods, toys, furniture, clothes, home decor, and much more! Help support your local schools and community.
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Attorney General Will Appeal the Lawsuit Challenging the Required Local Contribution for Schools

Education and Local School NewsAttorney General Craig Richards announced today that the State will appeal the recent ruling invalidating the required local contribution that municipalities are required to provide to their local schools. The State will also request a stay of the superior court’s ruling, which would ensure municipalities would continue to pay the local contribution until the Alaska Supreme Court decides the case or the legislature chooses to change the system of school funding.

“The State has a long history of sharing the burden of education funding between local governments, the State, and federal aid,” said Attorney General Richards. “This principle has long been a part of the statutory scheme for education passed by the legislature, and the State believes in the constitutionality of this system of shared support and local control.”

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