Stories about education.


Compared to the rate at the beginning of this decade, almost twice as many kids entering the Lower Kuskokwim School District are now successfully graduating.

The Lewis Angapak Memorial School stands abve other buildings in Tuntutuliak.
Rashah McChesney / Alaska's Energy Desk

When Y-K Delta villages locked down travel several months ago, the Lower Kuskokwim School District had to shut down construction on several new schools being built. Throughout the beginning of summer, construction crews have taken advantage of the relaxed restrictions to resume work. It’s a fragile arrangement, as new COVID-19 cases threaten to bring back village travel restrictions.

Homework packets were available for parents to pick up at Gladys Jung Elementary School on March 18, 2020.
Katie Basile / KYUK

This fall, social distancing at the Lower Kuskokwim School District will mean fewer students at a time in school buildings, and there will be new ways of staying connected while students learn from home.

The State of Alaska courthouse in Bethel, Alaska.
Dean Swope/KYUK

The first of two lawsuits against the Lower Kuskokwim School District for its role in alleged sexual abuse of minors is scheduled for trial in the fall of 2021.

LKSD is making its social workers available to students and parents following the arrest of Gladys Jung Elementary School Principal Chris Carmichael.
Lower Kuskokwim School District

There are at least four changes in the Lower Kuskokwim School District’s top administrative positions in Bethel for the next school year, but they’re all familiar faces. Current Assistant Superintendent Kimberly Hankins’ promotion to superintendent caused a ripple effect going all the way to the Bethel Regional High School. 

Racquel Slim rides in the BRHS graduation parade on May 16, 2020 in Bethel, Alaska.
Katie Basile / KYUK

Resiliency and overcoming obstacles on the way to adulthood are common themes of commencement speeches. This year, those themes took on new meaning when addressed to the region’s 2020 high school graduates.

Tatyana Avugiak of Chefornak and Kaylee King of Mekoryuk are KYUK interns, and will be high school seniors starting in the fall of 2020.
Courtesy of Tatyana Avugiak and Kaylee King

Doing schoolwork at home is tough, especially in rural villages where internet is limited and access to teachers requires a phone call. But that that’s what many students have been forced to do during the coronavirus pandemic.

With a pandemic looming over the whole world, one of the biggest disappointments came as a blow to the graduating seniors of 2020. Due to social distancing mandates, the classes of 2020 were not able to celebrate their accomplishments with family, friends, and teachers. KYUK wanted to give each senior the opportunity to hear their name publically shared over the radio, and the chance to be recognized for their accomplishments. KYUK reached out to the Kuspuk School District to participate in the radio graduations. Congratulations to the Aniak Jr. Sr. High School's and George Morgan Sr. High School’s graduating classes of 2020! 

Graduating seniors could not gather with family, friends, and teachers for a commencement ceremony this spring. KYUK wanted to give them a graduation over the radio so that they could hear their names read aloud publicly and share in traditional commencement addresses. KYUK reached out to schools in the Lower Kuskokwim School District to participate in the radio graduations, and many were happy to partner. Congratulations 2020 graduates!

Dean Swope / KYUK

Bethel Regional High School will have a new principal next school year. The Bethel Advisory School Board is interviewing two candidates for the position on May 13, and the public is invited to join the virtual meeting to listen and ask questions. Both candidates currently work in the school district and have held multiple school administrative positions.