District School News

Posted: Wednesday, February 27, 2002

Required exams begin next week

A series of standardized tests mandated by state law will be given to students beginning next week.

Starting Tuesday, high school sophomores will take the Alaska High School Graduation Qualifying Exam for the first time. Juniors and seniors who have not previously passed all sections also will take it. The three-day test covers mathematics, reading and writing and will be required for graduation beginning with the Class of 2004.

The state requires certain younger grades to take benchmark tests to monitor their progress. Beginning Monday, the tests will be given to grades three, six and eight. Third-grade tests take four days and the others take three days. Some schools may begin these tests Monday.

Grades four, five, seven and nine will take the Terra Nova test. These tests will be administered on various schedules between Monday and March 12.

Tests will be administered at schools; students in home-school or correspondence programs need to check with the programs for instructions on where to go for testing.

Educators ask parents to help assure that students get plenty of sleep and a good breakfast before these tests.

School board to meet Monday in Homer

The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District's Board of Education will meet Monday at 7:30 p.m. in Homer at the Mariner Theatre of Homer High School. All school board meetings are open to the public.

The budget for the 2002-03 is scheduled to be introduced at the meeting. Agendas are available at the meeting or at the district's Web site at www.kpbsd.k12.ak.us.

Peninsula students take top honors in VFW contest

For the first time since the Youth Essay Program has been sponsored by Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 10046 in Soldotna and its Ladies Auxiliary, all three state-level winners are from the central Kenai Peninsula.

Amber Hall, an eighth-grade home-schooled student, has been selected as the state first-place winner. In addition to $75 for being the winner of her group and an additional $300 for placing first for the central peninsula, Hall will receive a $500 savings bond. Her essay also will be submitted for national competition, where she will compete for one of 18 awards, the top prize being a $10,000 savings bond.

Tatiana Butler, an eighth-grade student at Nikiski Middle-Senior High School, won second place and a $200 savings bond, in addition to the $75 she received for being first in her school.

The third place is an eighth-grade student at Aurora Borealis Charter School in Kenai. Trevor Kauffman will receive a $100 savings bond, in addition to the $25 he received as a winner from his school.

On behalf of the members of the VFW Jerry V. Horn Memorial Post No. 10046 and the Ladies Auxiliary, Lee Dotson, commander, and Ruby Taylor, auxiliary president, congratulate the winners and wish Amber Hall the best of luck in the national competition.

SMS retains Battle of Books title

The Alaska Battle of the Books championships were last week. This year 131 teams took part at four levels. The Kenai Peninsula schools finished with a first, two thirds and a fifth. Here are the results:

High School: Mount Edgecumbe High in Sitka, first; Anchorage-Bartlett High, second; and a tie between Palmer High and Skyview High, third. The Skyview team members were Amanda Marshall, Kimber Martin, Rebekah Osterman and Angela Jones (alternate), and the coach was Carol Dallman.

Grades seven and eight: Soldotna Middle, first; Juneau's Dzantik'I Heene, second; and Klawock, third. Also competing were Juneau and Alaska Gateway. The SMS team was Becky Kilfoyle, Kristina Martin, J. Mohorcich and Marchall Mills, with coaches Tish Hallett, Terry Myrick and Marti Shirley. They won the state competition for the fifth year in a row, this time competing against 31 other schools.

Grades five and six: Fairbanks North Star's University Park, first; a tie between the Northwest Arctic's June Nelson Elementary and Alaska Gateway's Combined Tok School and Correspondence, second; and a three-way tie of Champan Elementary in Anchor Point; Lake and Peninsula's Egegik School and the Matanuska Borough's Midnight Sun, third. The Chapman team was Melissa Lettis, Rosanna Hunting and Jenny Christensen, coached by Sandra Lettis, and they battled 36 teams to place.

Grades three and four: Anchorage's Girdwood Elementary, first; Alyeska Central, second; Anchorage's Chugach Optional, third; Galena City School, fourth; and Kasilof's Tustumena Elementary, fifth. The Tustumena team was Mark Youngren, Erik Skjold, Wesley Matthews and David Laurie with coaches Karla Barkman and Ann Fraser. They battled with 35 other teams.

The contests, which test the knowledge of selected books, were held via teleconference links Feb. 19 through Friday. Battle of the Books is sponsored by the Alaska Association of School Librarians.

KBEA offers scholarships

The Kenai Borough Employees Association scholarship committee is accepting applications for three scholarships of $500 each. The scholarships are available to all 2002 graduates of the Kenai Peninsula Borough, including public schools, private schools and home schoolers.

Applications and instructions are available from any borough high school counselor's office, at the information desk at the Borough Building in Soldotna or on the borough's Web site at www.borough.kenai.ak.us as a featured item.

Applications must be delivered, or postmarked by March 29. Applications can be mailed or dropped off at the Kenai Peninsula Borough, KBEA Scholarship Committee, 144 . Binkley St., Soldotna, AK 99669.

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