Anchorage School District - Educating All Students for Success in Life
Call Us At: 907-742-4000
ASD's Lottery is open! Apply today! The District is taking applications between now and March 21, 2024. ASD offers additional schools or programs outside of the typical neighborhood school. The District utilizes a randomized lottery system to provide equal opportunity for all students who would like to participate in one of these alternative schools or programs. To participate in a school or program outside your child’s neighborhood school, a lottery application must be submitted by March 21, 2024.
ASD’s spring 2024 Alternative Schools and Programs EXPO will take place on Saturday, Feb. 10, from noon to 4 p.m. at Begich Middle School.

This is an opportunity for the public to come and learn about the unique schools and programs that ASD has to offer, including:

⊲ ABC (Back to Basics) Programs

⊲ AKChoice Virtual Learning Program

⊲ Alaska Middle College School (AMCS)

⊲ Alternative Schools

⊲ ASD Homeschool Programs

⊲ Career & Technical Education (CTE) Programs

⊲ Charter Schools

⊲ High School Credit Recovery Programs

⊲ Indigenous and Migrant Education

⊲ Language Immersion Programs

⊲ Montessori

⊲ Open Optional Programs

⊲ Preschool Programs

⊲ And more
Academies of Anchorage

Planning is underway for high school transformation in ASD through the Academies of Anchorage initiative!

This month, the "big eight" high schools will each build a proposal outlining what academies and pathways their community would like to offer at their campus. The proposals which will be built by principal-led sub-committees at each high school, will also include input from student, parent, and staff participants. Their objective is to develop a proposal of pathways that would have broad interest and reach. The recommendations will be presented to the Career Focused Academy Tactic Team by Feb 29. 

There will be two more Community Convenings, one in February and one in April, where the Academies of Anchorage master plan will be finalized. Academies for each of the comprehensive high schools will be named and career pathways identified by May of this year.


Freshman Academy launch set for the 2024-25 school year
Freshman Academy will start at the big eight high schools in the fall of the 2024-25 school year, where incoming freshmen will explore and identify their desired career pathway. The following school year (2025-26), sophomores will begin Career Academies as the first class to do so.

Questions and feedback
Stay tuned for the latest developments through the Academies of Anchorage webpage, including the FAQ section that is regularly updated. You may also submit a question at the bottom of the Academies of Anchorage Hot Topics page, or by emailing questions to [email protected]  
Reading for Life
The district is making a series of adjustments to its reading instruction to help students become better readers. Reading is foundational for students’ academic journeys, future opportunities and overall success. Research shows time and again that reading proficiency by the end of the third year sets students on a path to excel academically and unlocks a world of possibilities for their futures.

ASD’s goal is for 80% of third-grade students to be strong readers by 2026. To achieve that goal, there will be a number of changes in the 2023-24 school year.

New reading curriculum – The district is implementing a new reading curriculum for students in grades K-3. (Grades 4-5 will be implemented in the following 2024-25 school year.) The district’s dedicated teachers and staff are provided specialized training to effectively implement this curriculum.

New state requirements – The Alaska Reads Act has six strategic components designed to provide support to schools so all students read at grade level by the end of third grade. The new law incorporates a series of requirements for districts and teachers.
 
These adjustments present an opportunity for educators and parents to work together to support young readers and open up doors of opportunity and future success through the power of reading.
The Anchorage School District recognizes February as Black History Month and will celebrate the achievements and history of African American educators here in Alaska and the United States.
 
Click the video link to see how Principal Mark Dawson honored Dr. Elthedra Davis, who was the first Black Principal in the Anchorage School District.
ASD Celebrates School Board Appreciation Month
Congratulations, Chantel Black AAESP Outstanding Assistant Principal for the State of Alaska
Congrats to Ptarmigan Elementary Assistant Principial Chantel Black! The Alaska Association of Elementary School Principals (AAESP) announced that Ms. Black has been named the 2024 Outstanding Assistant Principal for the State of Alaska. She was surprised with the announcement during a student assembly at Ptarmigan Elementary on Tuesday, January 9th. Congratulations, Chantel!
Congratulations, Catherine Walker, National Teacher of the Year Finalist


Congratulations to Dimond High School science and career and technical education teacher Catherine Walker, who was recently named as one of the top four finalists for the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) 2024 National Teacher of the Year.

Walker who is the 2024 Alaska Teacher of the Year, develops problem-based, career-oriented lessons with a focus on sustainability and stewardship of natural resources, while encouraging students to build empathy and collaboration to solve problems in their community.

She supports students who are traditionally underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) careers by opening her classroom to business partners who allow the students to envision themselves in future career pathways.

Congrats Catherine!
 
Governor Dunleavy's State of the State Speech highlights
Alaska Native Cultural Charter School
Check out the Alaska Native Cultural Charter School which was highlighted by Governor Mike Dunleavy in his 2024 State of the State Speech. See how Alaska Native Cultural Charter School builds student success through traditional cultural learning.
2024-2025 Budget Solutions
Legislative Session Update
At its January 9 meeting, the School Board approved budget guidance as presented by the Administration. Since then, the Administration has been working with departments to produce a balanced budget that will be presented to the Board at the February 6, 2024 meeting. With a deficit of roughly $98 million, ASD faces serious headwinds going into this budget season. Securing a substantial and permanent increase to the BSA during the state legislative session is ASD's top legislative priority. The FY25 budget is expected to rely heavily on fund balance, roughly $70 million, to cover the deficit. The remaining balance is expected to come from a variety of reductions to departments, programs, and services.
Last week, the Alaska State Legislature began the 2024 legislative session in Juneau. The topic of education funding is at the forefront of the legislature's discussions. Senate Bill 140, proposes to permanently raise the Base Student Allocation (BSA) formula by $300, along with a number of other provisions concerning charter schools and correspondence school funding. ASD has taken an official position on this bill and shared that with the Legislature via this letter from Superintendent Bryantt and School Board President Bellamy.

ASD continues to advocate for a permanent BSA increase of $1,413 this year to account for a 30% rise in inflation since 2017, which is when the last meaningful BSA increase occurred. The Senate has signaled that they will not accept anything lower than a $680 BSA increase, which is what the Legislature approved last session. ASD will continue to engage with the House and Senate on the issue of education funding to ensure the unique needs of our District are met.

Additionally, the Senate Education Committee held a hearing on January 22 to get an update on implementation of the Alaska Reads Act. ASD staff Chris Opitz and Nicole Sommerville provided insightful comments to the committee on how ASD has navigated implementation of the Act.
FEMA Youth Preparedness Council
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is pleased to announce that the application period for its Youth Preparedness Council (YPC) is now open.

FEMA created the Youth Preparedness Council in 2012 to bring together leaders in grades 8-11 from across the country who are interested in supporting disaster preparedness. The YPC offers an opportunity for teens passionate about emergency management, climate resilience, community preparedness, and mental health to engage directly with FEMA to share ideas and feedback, grow their leadership skills, and make a difference in their communities.

YPC members also participate in a biennial summit in Washington, D.C. (tentatively scheduled for July 2025) where they will network and learn more about emergency management with FEMA leaders and other preparedness professionals.

YPC members are chosen based on their interest in preparedness and helping others, their involvement in their community, and their aptitude for working on a team and as a leader. Those who apply should express what preparedness means to them and how their skills and background could strengthen FEMA’s work. Successful applications will provide a well-rounded overview of applicants’ interests and activities, and include examples from their schoolwork, community service, and leadership experiences. Written or video responses to major application questions are accepted. Applications can be completed online or in PDF format.

The online application opened on Jan. 22, 2024 and closes on March 4 at, 11:59 p.m. PT. Selected candidates will be notified of their status by June 2024.

Interested youth can apply on the YPC page on FEMA.gov.

For more information about the YPC or other youth-focused preparedness initiatives, send an email to [email protected].
ASD Shine Bright
Check out the new podcast, ASD Shine Bright, which highlights the awesome things students and staff are doing in the Anchorage School District.

Listen to amazing stories, journeys, challenges, and successes.
This year's community-wide youth leadership event is primarily for youth grades 6-12, young adults aged 18-25, and the organizations that support these groups. This is a family-friendly event that will feature a special screening of the award-winning documentary 'The Body Politic,' with a visit and special commentary on the power of voting by the film's director/producer, Gabrielle Francis Paz Goodenough. Following the film will be a panel discussion on this year's theme.
5530 E Northern Lights Blvd.
Anchorage, AK 99504
907-742-4000
asdk12.org