Gary Pitka – Meet the CRSD Class of 2016

Pitka GaryName: Gary James Pitka II

Parent/Guardian Names: Lisa Wolf and Gary Pitka

Hometown Community: Mentasta

Grades Attended in the CRSD: 10th, 11th and 12th Grades

CRSD School Currently Attending: Glennallen School

Favorite Grade Level or Class: 10th Grade

Most Influential Educators: Ms. Miner

Most Enjoyable Aspect of Living in the Copper Valley: I like exploring a different place other than Mentasta.

Advice for Younger CRSD Students: Don’t cheat!

Plans After Graduation: I am going to work for Ahtna Construction.

Thank You: I thank my family for supporting me all the way.


The Class of 2016 will be graduating in less than one month!   This edition of the Snippets is an invitation to join us in celebrating each individual graduate and their accomplishments.

Please plan to attend one of the graduation ceremonies to honor the Class of 2016:

Kenny Lake School Graduation Ceremony – May 18

Slana School (K, 6th and 8th Grade Promotion) – May 19

Glennallen School Graduation Ceremony – May 20

Wesley King – Meet the CRSD Class of 2016

King WesleyName: Wesley S. King

Parent/Guardian Names: Stacy Morrison

Hometown Community: Strelna

Grades Attended in the CRSD: 2nd Grade through 12th Grade

CRSD School Currently Attending: Kenny Lake School

Favorite Grade Level or Class: 8th Grade

Most Influential Educators: Mr. Friendshuh, he has helped and supported me throughout my junior high and high school career keeping me informed on job fairs and getting things lined up for me that I wouldn’t have attended if I didn’t have him.

Most Enjoyable Aspect of Living in the Copper Valley: Free living and being able to hunt in the comfort of my own back yard.

Advice for Younger CRSD Students: Stay determined and diligence is key.

Plans After Graduation: I am planning on going to work for a construction company in Anchorage to help support my girlfriend through cosmetology school. I am also planning to build a construction company of my own, building exclusively log cabins.

Thank You: My mom who has pushed me the whole way through and never gave up on me.  Thank you for raising me to be who I am today, and teaching me the ways of life. No amount of words could describe how grateful I am for you. Thank you.


The Class of 2016 will be graduating in less than one month! This edition of the Snippets is an invitation to join us in celebrating each individual graduate and their accomplishments.

Please plan to attend one of the graduation ceremonies to honor the Class of 2016:

Kenny Lake School Graduation Ceremony – May 18

Slana School (K, 6th and 8th Grade Promotion) – May 19

Glennallen School Graduation Ceremony – May 20

Samiuela Finau – Meet the CRSD Class of 2016

Finau SamiuelaName:  Samiuela Malanga He-Lotu Finau

Parent/Guardian Names:  Militoni & Toa Finau

Hometown Community:  Glennallen

Grades Attended in the CRSD:  Kindergarten through 12th Grade

CRSD School Currently Attending:  Glennallen School

Favorite Grade Level or Class:  6th Grade

Most Influential Educators:

Mr. Friendshuh  (Kenny Lake) – Mr. Friendshuh has always been a fun teacher to have and he’s really engaged and seeks to help students. He puts students first.

Mr. Popp – Mr. Popp likes to have fun in the shop everyday and is just constantly getting students to work on a project.  He talks about life and always gives advice.

Mrs. Yahr – Mrs. Yahr is my youth group teacher and is always willing to talk to students. She can be strict at times, but it’s part of her charm and I’ll never forget it.

Mr. Shumway – Mr. Shumway is a funny guy that really wants everyone to be engaged. He definitely cares for students and is helpful to all students.

Tim Hand – Working with Tim Hand over the past summers has been absolutely fun. He’s hilarious and likes to see success on anything.

David Krimmel – David Krimmel is just like Tim Hand. He enjoys having fun on the job and has some good stories that are worth listening to.

Mrs. McMahan – She’s been really supportive with the wrestling and is a very kind person to talk with.  She’s been with the school for awhile and has taught each of my siblings. She’s a great person in the community.

Toa Finau – My mom is strict on the job and at home, but it’s okay because it’s her job. She’s fun to talk with and listens, and she’s been super helpful and always tells us to put others before ourselves.

Most Enjoyable Aspect of Living in the Copper Valley:  The community

Advice for Younger CRSD Students:  Enjoy school, even though you might hate it. Have fun.

Plans After Graduation:  I am joining the United States Navy as a Master at Arms

Thank You:  I’m thankful that I live in a community where everyone supports each other. I’d like to just thank the community for their support, not to just me, but also for the entire class of 2016, but for the remaining and future students of Glennallen.


The Class of 2016 will be graduating in less than one month!   This edition of the Snippets is an invitation to join us in celebrating each individual graduate and their accomplishments.

Please plan to attend one of the graduation ceremonies to honor the Class of 2016: 

Kenny Lake School Graduation Ceremony – May 18

Slana School (K, 6th and 8th Grade Promotion) – May 19

Glennallen School Graduation Ceremony – May 20


 

McKinley Terrell – Meet the CRSD Class of 2016

Terrell McKinleyName: McKinley Terrell

Hometown Community: Glennallen

Grades Attended in the CRSD: Kindergarten through 12th Grade

CRSD School Currently Attending: Glennallen School

Favorite Grade Level or Class:  Music – Freshman Year

Most Influential Educator(s): Toa Finau , Gene Crow, Debbie Lorence, Gini Sumerall and Elizabeth Yahr

Most Enjoyable Aspect of Living in the Copper Valley: It gives me the opportunity to live the Alaskan lifestyle. 

Advice for Younger CRSD Students: Don’t procrastinate, work hard, and high school may seem like it takes forever, but it goes by fast.   You need to do the best you can do because it is truly an important part of your life. 

Plans After Graduation: I am joining the United States Navy

Thank You: I would like to thank my sister, Michealla Terrell, for all the help and support she has given me.


The Class of 2016 will be graduating in less than one month!   This edition of the Snippets is an invitation to join us in celebrating each individual graduate and their accomplishments. 

Please plan to attend one of the graduation ceremonies to honor the Class of 2016: 

Kenny Lake School Graduation Ceremony – May 18

Slana School (K, 6th and 8th Grade Promotion) – May 19

Glennallen School Graduation Ceremony – May 20


 

Parent/Teacher Conferences – Snippets 4-14-16

This is a “General Update” edition of the CRSD Snippets.   Please visit www.crsd.us for more district news and information.  

Parent/Teacher Conferences

Parent-teacher conferences are scheduled for Monday, April 18, 2016. Thankfully, many parents talk to teachers on a weekly or even daily basis throughout the year as they monitor and support their child’s learning.   Even though parent-teacher conferences are not the only time parents can talk with their child’s teacher, it is a pre-scheduled opportunity for a longer visit to discuss the progress of each individual student.

Students are best served when their home and school work together. Learning and behavior expectations are more likely to be achieved when parents and teachers communicate frequently.   The benefits flow both ways. Parents and/or guardians should be fully informed of the school’s expectations.   Teachers can better serve students when parents and guardians are partners in the learning process.

Here are some suggestions to help you prepare for, participate in, and follow-up your parent-teacher conference(s).

BEFORE the CONFERENCE

  • Ask your child what is going well for them and what isn’t going well for them at school.   Share details of your conversation with the teachers;
  • Tell your child that you will be attending a parent-teacher conference.   Students benefit from knowing that home and school are working together for them;
  • Ask your child if they want you to ask anything specific or bring up any issues during the conference.

DURING the CONFERENCE

  • What does my child need to know and do?
  • How is my child learning what she/he needs to know and do?
  • How do I know if my child has learned what she/he needs to know and do?
  • What will we do if my child hasn’t learned what she/he needs to know and do?
  • What will we do if my child already knows what she/he needs to know and do?
  • Ask what you can do at home to support your child’s learning;
  • How is my child doing socially at school?
  • Does my child put forth appropriate effort in his learning?
  • Share your own thoughts about your child, including his experiences in school and academic progress.

FOLLOWING the CONFERENCE

  • Report on the conference to your child;
  • Note any areas that need improvement;
  • Note areas that desire special recognizing and praise;
  • Make a plan for any at-home suggestions you and the teacher agreed upon;
  • Schedule a phone call or visit to follow-up with the teacher on any ongoing concerns or goals.

Teachers in the Copper River School District invest a lot of time and energy preparing for parent-teacher conferences because they are committed to the success of every individual student.   Finding the answers to the above essential questions is not always easy.

The answers to the above questions will be most effective for student success when home and school are working together and communicating regularly.   If you have not received an invitation to your April 18th parent-teacher conference, please contact the school as soon as possible.   Please respond promptly to the invitation and reschedule if necessary.   Your attendance at parent-teacher conferences can make a huge difference in your child’s success.   We greatly value your partnership.

STUDENT HANDBOOKS

At a work session and regular meeting on April 5th, the Board of Education adopted the CRSD Student Handbook for the 2016-2017 school year.   Principals provide the Board crsd logoPolicy Committee with suggested revisions from each school community.   The new student handbook will be available on the district’s web page this summer.

2016-2017 and 2017-2018 SCHOOL CALENDARS

The Board of Education adopted school calendars for the 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 school years at their March 1st meeting.   Both calendars are currently available at http://www.crsd.us.

UPCOMING SNIPPETS

Most of the remaining Snippets for this school year will focus on each of our graduating seniors.   We look forward to shining the spotlight on them so you can see their accomplishments and plans for the future. We are very proud of them all.   Be sure and check out the Snippets article in the Copper River Record. You can also view the articles and pictures at www.crsd.us with a button for easy sharing with family and friends.

General Update – Snippets April 7

This is a “General Update” edition of the CRSD Snippets.   Please visit www.crsd.us for more district news and information.  

LEGISLATURE

It comes as no surprise to anyone who follows the Alaska news that budgets for almost every entity that relies on state funding will be stretched very thin in fiscal year 2017.   The CRSD’s budget is no exception.   It is likely that there will be a reduction in the number of employees and transfers will be required.   A reduction in revenue and significant increase of expenses must be addressed in this year’s budget development.

For the past several years, the CRSD’s budget has been subsidized by a provision that spreads the financial impact of declining enrollment over several years.   CRSD will not qualify for that provision next year (unless enrollment drops 5% or greater) resulting in a $256,000 reduction in revenue.

This past week a bill was introduced in the Alaska Senate that will increase the amount school districts must contribute to the public employees and teacher retirement systems.   The proposed legislation would increase CRSD payroll expenses approximately $165,000. Additional increases of approximately $30,000 each year for retirement will continue through FY19.

In another untimely blow, we were recently notified that the premium for CRSD health insurance will increase 25% for the 2016-2017 school year.   This correlates with the increase experienced by other employers and Alaskan school districts.   The increase for insurance benefits will add approximately $240,000 to district’s expenses for the 2016-2017 school year. The premium will total $22,968 per year per insured employee (90% paid by CRSD, 10% paid by employee).

Other factors that may impact the budget are ongoing collective bargaining between the Board of Education and its certified and classified associations.   The CRSD will also be asking for request-for-proposals and negotiating a new pupil transportation contract.

CRSD is only one local entity facing the brutal facts of low oil prices.   Other valuable agencies in our community will struggle for funding and/or cease operations all together.   This further impacts the local economy, CRSD, and local business.   Unemployment impacts school enrollment.

Almost daily the business office staff is working on the budget.   We have spent the last weeks going through the CRSD budget line by line to identify potential savings.

In a previous Snippets, I outlined the opportunities for public input on the FY17 budget.   A flow-chart outlining that process remains on the www.crsd.us homepage.   Please watch the district calendar and call your local school office for dates and times of upcoming meetings related to the budget.   Depending on the timing of final funding bills approved by the Legislature and signed by Governor Walker, I expect that I will be presenting budget recommendations to each school’s ASB in early May.   The CRSD must submit a budget to the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development no later than July 15th.

If you can’t attend one of the budget related meetings, and/or would rather provide input individually, please contact me or one of your elected Board members at the district office, by email or phone.

AMP TESTING

Due to issues with their test vendor, the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development notified school districts on Friday, April 1st that all Alaska Measures of Progress (AMP) assessments have been canceled. Students will not be participating in statewide testing this school year.   DEED is currently in the process of issuing a request for proposals for a new testing vendor.   Despite the lack of a statewide assessment, students in the Copper River School District and over thirty-five other districts take MAP assessments to measure student academic achievement.   To learn more about your students(’s) standardized MAP test scores, please contact their teacher.

20160308_175725SLANA SCHOOL ARCHERY PROGRAM

Students at Slana School have been participating in the National Archery in Schools
Program (NASP) since the beginning of the school year.   Volunteer Coaches Ole Bates and Lyle Beauchamp have donated hours of their time to teach the students how to safely and accurately handle a bow and arrow.   Mr. Bates and Mr. Beauchamp bought all the students blue team shirts, which are also being sold to help raise money for the program.   Seven students competed in a State of Alaska NASP tournament, with three scoring high enough to qualify for the national tournament in Louisville, Kentucky.   The students are raising money to attend the May 12th-14th, 2016 competition, including airfare and hotel expenses.   Congratulations and be20160308_182142st wishes to Avery Hart, Thomas Abraham, Linnea Beauchamp and their coaches. If you would like to make a donation toward their trip, please contact Coach Bates or Coach Beauchamp at 822-5868.   Please visit the Slana School Facebook page or call the school to find out about other fundraisers, including a raffle, and community barbecue dinner.

IMPORTANT DATES

April 15th – Early Release

April 18th – Inservice / Parent-Teacher Conferences

May 13th – Inservice Day

May 18th – Kenny Lake Graduation Ceremony

May 19th – Slana Promotion Ceremony

May 20th – Glennallen Graduation Ceremony