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LKSD Reaches Insurance Settlement For Kilbuck School Fire

A photo taken in 2016 of the destroyed Kilbuck school campus.
Dean Swope

After five years, the Lower Kuskokwim School District has reached a settlement with its insurance companies for the Kilbuck School fire. The school burned down in November 2015. LKSD made the announcement in a press release on Nov. 18.
For five years, students of the Ayaprun Elitnaurvik Yup'ik Immersion School have been learning in the Kipusvik building, which used to be a grocery store. The Kuskokwim Learning Academy students have been housed at Yuut Elitnaurviat, the region’s adult workforce development center.

With the insurance settlement from the fire, the district says that construction for these students’ new school will begin in the summer of 2021. The press release did not disclose the terms of the settlement. Design for the new school has been underway for two years, and it will be located on the same campus as the Bethel Regional High School.

“The Kilbuck School fire was a tragedy for our district, our employees, and our students,” Superintendent Kimberly Hankins wrote in the press release. “This agreement will allow us to proceed with finalizing the plans for a new school, and help our district heal and move forward.”

Greg Kim was a news reporter for KYUK from 2019-2022.
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