Around the District

Posted: Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Public comment on AYP sought

The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District has been designated in improvement status by the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development for failure to meet all areas of Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) during the 2005-06 school year. The district must meet all 32 distinctive achievement targets as set forth in the State of Alaska No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Plan.

KPBSD has met 30 of the 32 targets but failed to reach the necessary achievement levels for the subgroup of Students with Disabilities (SWD) in the content areas of reading and language arts and math.

The school district remains in Level 2 status until these achievement areas have been met. In order to meet the targets, 71.48 percent of SWD must be proficient in reading and language arts and 57.61 percent must be proficient in mathematics. Currently 50 percent of KPBSD students with disabilities are proficient in reading and language arts and 36 percent are proficient in mathematics.

KPBSD will hold several meetings throughout the district to gather input from teachers, parents, students and the community on how best to improve the proficiency levels for this group of students. The following meetings are scheduled:

· Seward Elementary — at 6:30 p.m. Monday in the library;

· Homer Middle School — at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the library; and

· Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly Chambers — at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 18.

Parents, teachers, students, and community members are may attend to share ideas for improving student achievement. For more information, call Norma Holmgaard, KPBSD director of federal programs at 714-8892.

VFW Ladies Auxiliary sponsors art contest

The VFW Ladies Auxiliary of the Jerry V. Horn Memorial Post No. 10046 will sponsor the Young American Creative Patriotic Art Awards. The contest was developed as a way to encourage high school students to use their artistic talents to express their patriotism.

Students in grades nine through 12, including home-school students, are eligible to participate.

Artwork, including digital art entries, must be submitted on paper or canvas. Discs or CDs will not be accepted. Watercolor, pencil, pastel, charcoal, tempera, crayon, acrylic, pen-and-ink or oil may be used. Artwork must be matted but not framed, not smaller than 8-by-10 inches or larger than 18-by-24 inches, not including the mat.

The first-place state winner will go to the national level, where the first-place prize is $10,000, a jacket, plaque, airfare and two nights lodging to attend the 2007 Ladies Auxiliary National Convention.

The entry deadline is Dec. 8. For more information on contest and a complete list of prize awards, visit www.ladiesaux, contact the art teacher in any of the area high schools or call Bea Johnson at 262-1262.

Aurora Borealis Charter

Grades kindergarten through eight are participating in the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital math-a-thon. Students will complete math problems and collect pledges to support the hospital. St. Jude is a leader in the research on children’s cancers and other childhood diseases, and no child is ever turned away because of a lack of finances. To support St. Jude, the students hope to surpass last year’s amount raised of $3,890.

Connections home-school program

The book fair will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Oct. 19 at the district media center directly across from Soldotna Elementary School.

There will be a visit to the Job Center for high school students from 1 to 3 p.m. Oct. 24. Call Natalie to register to attend.

The 25th Anchorage Alaska College and Career Fair will be held from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Oct. 30 and 31 at the Egan Civic and Convention Center. Parent’s Night will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Oct. 30. The events are free. Call Bob or Natalie at 714-8880 to register. There will be approximately 150 institutions represented and available for consultation.

School picture retakes will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. Monday at the Magic Moments Studio in Soldotna.

Solid Rock Bible Camp Hay Tunnel event will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. and from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday. The cost is $5 per person. Hot drinks and bonfire will be provided. Call the office at 714-8880 to sign up.

For information on the Pumpkins Gone Crazy contest visit the school’s Web site at

Cook Inlet Academy

Students of the week are: Kristen May,being kind to classmates; Nicole Moffis and Meghan Powers, extra effort at cleaning camp; Kelsey Tachick, helping her friends; Reva Lovett, improved attitude; Caleb Spence, being a terrific helper after school; Noah Leaf, finishing addition timed tests; Kendra Brush, enthusiastic learning; Kayla Moore, helping a fellow student; Kaycee Munn, excellence in behavior and attitude; and Hannah Kjeldson, faithfulness in making up homework.

The fall banquet will be held Nov. 17. More information will be sent in the mail.

It is bear week in the lower elementary classrooms. Classes will join together for a fall group science unit.

The cross country team finished its season. The girl’s team placed sixth in state and was led by Holly Kopp’s sixth-place finish. The boys finished eighth with Josh Holly’s 10th-place finish. In addition, the boy’s team won the State Sportsmanship Award.

In preparation for the ACSI representative scheduled to visit the school Oct. 23, volunteers are needed to do some maintenance projects and cleaning Oct. 19 and 20. There will be no school on these days.

Grace Lutheran

This is the first full week of basketball season. The team practices every Monday and Thursday night. This will be the first teams the school has had. The school will play as part of a conference of schools throughout the Mat-Su, Anchorage, peninsula and a team from Kodiak. Teams are made up of fifth- through eighth-graders.

The students in grades four through eight are finishing up the fall Terra Nova testing. Last week was the first week. The school is working on having kids who may have missed a test or two due to illness catch up. The school hopes to have the results by December.

In geography fourth- through eighth-graders have learned the 50 states (with correct spelling) and half of the capitols of those states. In a couple more weeks they hope have all of them down.

The school held a Christian Education Sunday last week. The focus was on how wonderful a Christ centered education is for children and the blessings they have received because of that education. Future expansion plans for the addition to the school were talked about at length and the school will find out within a week or two when the digging will begin.


Enrollment will remain open through October. For information call 260-7555.

Families are invited to browse the resource room or check out books and kits from the library from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays This month’s featured kit is the “Inventors and Inventions.” The kit is full of books, movies and activities.

October’s Family Fun Day will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Friday at the Solid Rock Bible Camp hay tunnel. Call the office to sign up and fill out a medical release slips.

The monthly Burnout Busters and Kids Art will be held from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Pictures will be taken Oct. 20 and 21. Call the office and schedule a time for family or individual pictures.

Math Olympiads will meet at 2 p.m. Oct. 23. For information, call 260-7555.

More information may be found on the school’s Web site at

Kaleidoscope School of Arts and Science

Mrs. Shelden’s and Mrs. Stroh’s classes will walk to the creek today for water testing.

Classes will visit the Peninsula Clarion on Monday. Parents are asked to send their child with the appropriate clothing for the weather.

Monday at 6:30 p.m. is the Fall Showcase for classes located in the Sears Elementary School building in the gym. Each class will perform a short story. Visits to classrooms will follow to view science projects. Kaleidoscope Korner will hold its showcase Nov. 3.

The APC will meet at 4 p.m. Oct. 23 at Kaleidoscope Korner. This will be the regular meeting for the month as the Oct. 9 meeting was held to discuss the Kenai Conversations with Donna Peterson. The final Kenai Conversation meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Nov. 7 in the Renee C. Henderson Auditorium at Kenai Central High School.

Kenai Central High

The school will host borough honor choir Monday and Tuesday. The event will conclude with a performance at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Renee C. Henderson Auditorium.

Also on Tuesday, there will be a job shadow meeting at 2:30 p.m. in the library.

Monday is the first day of hockey practice. Interested players must have a physical and all paper work turned in before they can tryout. If you have any questions, call Coach Kiel at 283-7524.

On Tuesday, seniors will meet in the little theater during advisory period to discuss post secondary options with counselors. For more information, call Jon Lillevik at 283-7524.

Dates to remember:

· Friday — C, junior varsity and varsity volleyball vs Homer at 3:30, 4:30 and 6 p.m. and swim team at Palmer;

· Saturday — Swim team at Palmer.

Kenai Montessori

The Children’s House students are studying peace and community outreach. Students made a visit to the Kenai Fire Station and learned about fire safety with Captain Diorec and firefighters John and Sarah.

In music with Miss Stefanie, students are learning “Dona Nobis Pacem” in Latin and in parts.

In art, Miss Brandi is doing a unit on the color wheel, including the study of primary and secondary colors.

In farm school Thursday, students helped clear the horse pasture of brush and logs and as a result got to have a big bonfire and roast hotdogs.

At the Toddler House, Miss Tara has introduced the letter “M.” Miss Tara’s class has been learning about Mexico and maracas.

In music with Miss Stefanie, students are learning “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” in sign language, as well as singing and dancing with rhythm sticks.

The Toddler House sends a sad good-by and best wishes to Ruby Tappan and her family, who are moving to Mexico.

Students of the week at Toddler House are: Erin Koziczkowski, peacemaker; and Ruby Tappan, stellar student.

Students of the week at Children’s House are: Linnea Renken, peacemaker; Demaris Henson, Moose Herd stellar student; Faith Glassmaker, Beaver Pond stellar student; and Jacey Kosto, Orca Pod stellar student.

Kenaitze Cuya Qyut’anen Head Start

An alumni party will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. Monday in the Family House. The school hopes many former students, families and staff will attend and help them to celebrate.

Fall parenting classes are in full swing, with “Raising A Thinking Child” and “Parenting for Fathers” on Tuesday evenings and Parents 1-2-3-4 on Fridays.

The children are starting active play in the Family House, and get to experience a wide open space to be physically active in, regardless of the weather.

“Preparing for Winter” is the theme for October, and children are coming with their snow gear, to be ready when the snow flies. The children are doing activities with the color orange, circles, the number 2, the letters “W,” “P” and “A” and the values of family and home.

Kenai Middle

Eighth-grade students interested in going to Washington D.C. over spring break with Mr. Summer should call the office at 283-4896.

The following students were each selected as a Character Counts Student last week: Jeremiah Barton and Johnny Trux. These students received a pizza for lunch last week.

The student council is selling school T-shirts and sweatshirts. T-Shirts are $13, crewneck sweatshirts are $20 and hooded sweatshirts are $25.

The book fair will be held Oct. 23 through 27.

Soccer athletes need to turn in their uniforms to Mr. Felchle and Mr. Verkuilen.

Students are asked to remember that they are not supposed to stay after school unless they are supervised by an adult. Students need to clear the hallways and wait outside or between the double doors for your ride.

Student council is sponsoring an activity night Friday.

Dates to remember:

· Thursday — Picture retakes;

· Friday — Activity Night from 6 to 8 p.m.

Mountain View Elementary

Student of the month lunch will be held at 11:35 a.m. today.

The fifth-grade classes will travel to Anchorage this week to the Alaska Native Heritage Center and to the Anchorage Museum of History and Art. This will begin a two-month long unit on Native Americans culminating in a music presentation and parent visitation in November.

Mr. Daniels’ class has been playing a Jeopardy game to review and prepare for their test on “Cycles in Nature” in the enrichment rooms. Marc Johnson also enhanced their understanding of the carbon-oxygen cycle by demonstrating how plants use carbon-dioxide, and produce oxygen during the process of photosynthesis. They have been expanding on what they know about the water cycle and ways to protect our water by viewing on

The Family Fall Festival will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Oct. 20. There will be family activities.

The fall book fair will be held Oct. 20 through to Oct. 27.

Nikiski Middle-High

October’s recipient of the Golden Apple Award for educational excellence goes to Sharon Thompson.

Thompson is the intensive needs teacher. She works with students who have special needs. She also is the assistant girls basketball coach, who are the the defending state champions. She was chosen for the award based on her dedication to students as a teacher and coach, helping wherever she is needed for extracurricular activities including taking money at the gate to keeping score, manning the concession stands and serving on the PTSA board as vice president. The staff said she can always be counted on to be there when a student or staff member needs her support.

The PTSA will meet at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 12 in the library.

Tuesday is picture retake day.

The school is looking for a coach for the hockey season. If you are interested or have any ideas, call Lucas Peless at 398-4149 or 776-3456.

Nikiski North Star Elementary

The prekindergartners have been learning and discovering letter sounds every day, marching to music with their rhythm band instruments.

The class celebrated Johnny Appleseed’s birthday with several stories, such as “The Star in the Apple” and books from the library. They also made crock-pot applesauce. Pattern blocks turned into geometric apple trees and Mrs. Durrant’s sixth-graders helped stamp apple slices on paper T-shirts.

The school’s library is stepping up with Accelerated Reader program. A number of students have reached the first two certification levels and are close to reaching the third.

Kindergarten, first- and second-graders are reading books for the schoolwide Battle of the Books program.

Some of the most popular books at the library have been: “The Usborne Book of Art Skills” by Fiona Watt; “Harry the Poisonous Centipede” by Lynn Reid Banks; and “Dragon Hound of Honor” by Julie Andres Edwards and Emma Walton Hamilton.

The annual autumn Scholastic Book Fair will be held at the end of the month. The theme will be “Wild for Books.” The library will be decorated into a reading rain forest.

The library also is seeking volunteers.

Ninilchik School

The annual book fair will be from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays Oct. 23 through Oct. 3 in the library. The theme will be “Reading Rain Forest.” Cash, checks and credit cards will be accepted. For more information, call Marnice Boone at 567-3709. Proceeds will be used to purchase books for the media center and classrooms.

Second-graders had a guest art teacher. Her name was Susan Welsh-Smith. They made artwork with positive and negative space and symmetry using the works of Henri Matisse as the focal point. The pictures of vases created in this design can be seen in the elementary hallway.

READS Primary School

Students of the week are: First grade, Donovan Smith; kindergarten, Kodie Vienna; morning prekindergarten, Karly Phillips; afternoon prekindergarten, Isabelle Harris. These students have shown to be good students and great examples to fellow classmates.

Kenai Fire Department is scheduled to bring the fire safety house to the school Friday. Kindergarten and first-grade students will practice evacuation techniques with the firefighters.

Students will begin the 10th annual food drive. Students will collect canned and perishable food items for the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank. Students are encouraged to bring food items beginning Monday. Donations will be delivered to the food bank Nov. 10 by kindergarten and first-grade students.

Redoubt Elementary

Many students, families, staff and community members participated in the Walk Your Child to School Day on Oct. 4. The school would like to thank the many people and agencies who helped make the event successful.

The school hosted a reading training program for volunteers Oct. 2. Those interested who were not able to attend the training may call Sheilah-Margaret Pothast for an information packet.

The site council meets at 3:45 p.m. today in the conference room. Meetings are open to the public.

The National Fire Prevention Week is this week. CES will perform puppet shows for kindergarten through third grade and will do classroom presentations for grades four through six.

Parent conferences will be held Oct. 26 and 27. Scheduling information will be sent home soon.

Intramural basketball will begin soon. Information will be given to students during physical education classes.

The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is requesting input from parents, staff, students, and community members regarding the development of the district improvement plan.

Three meetings are scheduled in October. Meeting times and locations will be in the Peninsula Clarion. More information may be obtained by calling the school at 262-9006.

The KPBSD also is recruiting members to serve on the district-wide calendar committee. More information and an application may be obtained online at services/CalendarCommittee.htm.

Sear Elementary

The school had several chickens come to visit which enriched the reading curriculum and provided an opportunity to investigate egg development. The students were able to hear rooster’s sounds and the hen laid an egg. The students practiced a variety of different reading strategies.

The kindergartners practiced reading color words and looking for details as they read “I went walking.” The first-graders worked on fluency, monitor and clarify, fantasy and realism and comprehension from the book “Minerva Louis at School.” The second-graders learned about making predictions and reviewed short and long vowel sounds from the book “Mrs. Brown Goes to Town.”

Mrs. Hanson’s, Mrs. Miller’s and Mrs. Moon’s second-graders are studying bats. The students have discussed the impact and benefits of bats on the environment, compared and contrasted the similarities between birds and bats, and learned about the physical traits and adaptations of bats. They also are researching bats using a variety of non-fiction and fiction literature. Students discussed the artistic terms symmetry and line, illustrated physical traits of the bat and traced the bat wing bone structure with white crayon. Students practiced water color and crayon resist techniques and the use of a watercolor brush.

Ms. Ralston’s first-graders investigated how water moves through bubble art, blow art and used soap to move different objects. Students also read several different books dealing with water movement.

Kindergartners are involved in a variety of harvest projects as they get ready to go on a cranberry and apple picking trip today.

This is Fire Safety week at the school. The Kenai Fire Department will visit each class and will bring the Fire Safety House for students to investigate.

Skyview High

Fourteen members of the student council will go to Valdez today to participate in the Alaska Association of Student Governments Fall Leadership Conference. The three-day conference will include students from 44 different schools.

Clubs and Sports are coming to Edline. Students are developing pages for each club and sport on Edline. The general public can visit the school’s home page at pages/Skyview_High. Edline includes general school information, calendars and class information.

The school has raised over $500 through Safeway’s 10 percent back to schools reward program. If you have any receipts for the program bring them to the school as soon as possible as the deadline for redeeming them is Oct. 17. Community members also can enter them into the computer from home. Just follow the instructions on the slip and search for our school by the 99669 zip code.

Six students are attending the Workforce Development Center in Kenai as part of their school day. This program is a step above the shop classes in that upon completion the students earn a Construction Trades Certificate through the National Center for Construction Education Research. The school, as well as other local schools, are working with the Alaska Department of Labor, the Talents High Growth Industry Training Project and the Workforce Development Center to offer students who feel the regular high school curriculum fails to meet their needs an alternative to dropping out. These students are gaining employable job skills as part of their school day.

Counselors will visit the junior classes to discuss credits, graduation requirements, PSAT, career fair sign up, and any other issues students have concerning their final years of high school, and looking at being ready for post secondary education or careers.

Borough honor choir will be held Monday and Tuesday at Kenai Central High School. The concert will be at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday. There is a $3 charge for the concert.

The PSAT test will given at the school Oct. 18. A non-refundable fee of $13 must be paid to Ms. Hanson by lunch on Tuesday.

Soldotna High

The band, choir, jazz band and swing choir concert will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday under the direction of Vernel Schneider. The is no cost, however a free will donation box will be available.

The PTSA will meet at 5:30 p.m. Thursday in the teachers’ workroom.

The following students were honored as Rotary Students of the Month by the staff: Logan Hutchings, Greg VanCuren, Jasmine Clock, Josh Mokracek, Jenna Jensen, Kathryn Vengley, Amanda Norris, Ashley Owen, Ryan Christenson, Kaitlyn Wehrli, Austin Struthers, Alan Moiles, Josh Kristich and Martina Vanvelzor.

Parents and community members who are interested in working as substitute teachers at SoHi may call Principal Todd Syverson for information.

Rehearsals are under way for the drama department’s fall production of “A Piece of My Heart,” the story of nurses during the Vietnam War.

Soldotna Elementary

Ms. Buben’s third-graders used the letters of the word autumn as a “story starter” to create poems about fall. Afterward, community member Joellen Fowler presented an art lesson using paint and real autumn leaves and each student’s poem and art work is displayed in the intermediate hall outside the third grade. These studies of fall birch trees and autumn poems are a learning activity that supports the language arts curriculum focus on creating writing in various genres.

Debbie Carroll is the new parent representative to the site council. Site council meetings are held on the first Tuesday of the month at 4 p.m. It is open to all parents.

The PTA met last week and is planning an ice cream snack sale Oct. 19 and the Scholastic Book Fair during the week of parent teacher conferences, Oct. 23 through 27. Plan to visit the book fair and purchase reading materials for the holiday season and the inside winter times.

Primary grades were surprised Friday when football players from Soldotna High School came to read books to each class and talk about how reading has helped them. Project Star, developed by Chet Syverson, a senior honor society member from SoHi, will bring high school students to the school to read and serve as reader role models. Other student body, various athletic teams and student leadership groups will visit the school throughout the year giving their time and talents for the students.

Soldotna Middle

The school would like to congratulate the intramural soccer teams. They played the Kenai Middle Team twice. Competitive team soccer seasons also were successful. The boys’ maroon team took third in boroughs, defeating Homer 7-2 in the final game. Maroon girls took third, defeating Seward 5 to 1. Silver girls won their first game 3-0 over Seward and played Kenai in the championship game. Silver girls defeated Kenai 3 to 1 to win the borough championship.

Mrs. Tabor’s first quarter home economics sewing class is ready for the fall season as they have finished producing their locker caddies, potholders, trick or treat bags and extra credit neck warmers filled with dried corn.

Dates to remember:

· Thursday — Picture retakes from 7:45 a.m. to noon.;

· Tuesday — Band and choir concert at 7 p.m.

Soldotna Montessori Charter

Students in grades four through six may participate in the after-school robotics club. Students must commit to attend all practices and the competition in Anchorage in December. Parent permission forms were sent home last week’s Thursday folder.

A few volunteers are needed for robotics and Battle of the Books. Battle of the Books meets during lunch for grades kindergarten through second and before school for grades three and four.

Mrs. Atchley’s students have been learning the beginnings of the universe. The first few nanoseconds of their reenactment were fast and superheated. But as things moved out and cooled off, the molecules were born into law and order. Next they made interpretations of sub-atomic particles, such as quarks and wimps. Hanging now in the room is a collection of particles.

Last week, Mr. DeVolld’s class spent much of their time outside of their classroom connecting with the community. After rafting Friday on the Kenai, the students spent the next five school days at the Challenger Learning Center of Alaska. The time was part of the Starbase Alaska program. Students learned about goal setting, teamwork, career choices, matter, air pressure, and the scientific list goes on. To practice their new skills, the students participated in activities from particle collection to a full mission to rendezvous with a comet. The students were the first class on the peninsula to participate. The school would like to thank the parents, sponsors and volunteers who helped.

Tebughna School

Students of the month were treated to a pizza lunch with Ms. Kaye on Monday.

After school tutoring and help with homework is being provided through After the Bell with the Boys and Girls Club. Also Ms. Truesdell and Mr. Joachim is offering the tutorial after-school program from SERCC in the computer lab from 3:45 to 5 p.m. for grades three through 12.

Students participating in one of these after school homework programs must stay in the library or the multipurpose room and not wander the halls visiting or talking with friends. Students not actively involved in the program(s) and working on homework will need to go home.

Open gym is being held Tuesdays and Thursdays nights for youth in grades seven through 12 and Wednesdays and Fridays for children in grades kindergarten through sixth. For more information, contact Elizabeth at the Boys and Girls Club.

Tustumena Elementary

Students will participate in the Lynx Track activity Monday through Oct. 18. The activity will be an ice skating trip. This award is for students who demonstrated proper behavior and positive performance during the first quarter of school.

The school will participate in the St. Jude’s math-A-thon during the months of October and November. The parent information sheets have gone home and student permission to participate forms will be sent home Friday. Participation in the fundraising event is voluntary; however, the math-A-thon booklets and the interactive computer program may be a great way to reinforce the math skills. For more information, call the school.

Wings Christian Academy

The volleyball tournament will take place Friday in conjunction with fun friday. The Eagles remain undefeated. Kasey McGee has joined the team.

The new character trait is truthful. Jesse Puletau won an award for office of the week. The kindergartners learned their seventh memory verse.

Last week, David Westbrook, a missionary from Australia, was the guest speaker for chapel. He spoke on the word “beseech.”

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