9/15/19: KPBSD message to parents about emergency school closure

Sunday, September 15, 2019KPBSD logo
KPBSD communications sent this message via emnail to all KPBSD parents and guardians via student contact information in PowerSchool.

Dear KPBSD parents and guardians,

We hear your concerns and care for all of our schools and communities. It’s Sunday evening, and all KPBSD schools will open Monday, September 16, 2019, on a normal schedule.

The school district team worked throughout the weekend, and will continue to work with KPEA and KPESA to reach a Tentative Agreement that would prevent or end this strike. Monday evening the Board of Education will meet in executive session to discuss employee contract negotiations.

We have received questions about how you will learn if the strike will happen, or how schools will be reopened during a work stoppage.

Please prepare for a work stoppage and emergency school closure slated to begin Tuesday, September 17, 2019. A strike will continue until a Tentative Agreement is reached between the school district and the KPEA and KPESA associations. When a Tentative Agreement is reached, we will communicate with everyone through all KPBSD platforms about the opening of schools. On Monday:

  • Make sure that your child takes home any personal belongings he or she may want, and that you pick up any medications from the school nurse.
  • If you have updates to your contact information in PowerSchool, talk to your school secretary, and make sure to opt-in to receive text messages from KPBSD. Simply text “Yes” or “Y” to 67587 to receive text messages to your PowerSchool mobile contact.

Monday may be challenging for you and your family with the unknown about school being in session on Tuesday or in coming days. We will continue to provide you with daily updates every evening, and as soon as a Tentative Agreement is reached.

Links:

*The KPEA and KPESA association presidents sent an email to the superintendent of schools the evening of September 13, 2019 giving 72 hours’ notice about a work stoppage beginning September 17, 2019. Read the email letter.

9/14/19: KPBSD message to parents about Emergency Schools Closure

Saturday, September 14, 2019KPBSD logo
KPBSD communications sent this message to all KPBSD parents and guardians via student contact information in PowerSchool.

Dear KPBSD parents and guardians,

I am writing to let you know that beginning Tuesday, September 17, 2019*, all 42 schools in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District will be closed until a Tentative Agreement is reached between the school district and the Kenai Peninsula Education Association (KPEA) and the Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association (KPESA).

I want you to know that the school district bargaining team will continue to work with KPEA and KPESA to reach a Tentative Agreement that would end this strike.

You will receive daily updates through your contact information in PowerSchool.

It is important for you to know these things now:

Read: What will happen if there is a strike in the KPBSD?

On Monday, September 16, 2019, all KPBSD schools will be open on a normal schedule.

  • Make sure that your child takes home any personal belongings, and that you pick up any medications from the school nurse.
  • Make any updates to your contact information in PowerSchool with the school secretary, and make sure to opt-in to receive text messages from KPBSD. Simply text “Yes” or “Y” to 67587 to receive text messages to your PowerSchool mobile contact.

Beginning Tuesday, September 17, 2019, all KPBSD schools will be closed during the strike and emergency schools closure.

The duration of the emergency schools closure is unknown, and you will receive daily updates and progress, starting with this message, until the work stoppage ends.

The school district is very aware that this is a challenging and difficult time for everyone, especially our families. The district values all our teachers and support staff, and is working intently to create a solution to bring these negotiations to a closure and return to our primary mission to educate your child.

Links:

*The KPEA and KPESA association presidents sent an email to the superintendent of schools the evening of September 13, 2019 giving 72 hours’ notice about a work stoppage beginning September 17, 2019. Read the email letter.

2019-09-17 Emergency Schools Closure

News Release: KPBSD receives 72-hour work stoppage notice

KPEA and KPESA announce, “Kenai Educators Will Strike on Tuesday, September 17”KPBSD logo

Soldotna, September 13, 2019—The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District (KPBSD) received notification tonight that, “the Kenai Peninsula Education Association and Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association intend to commence a work stoppage on September 17, 2019 at 6:30 a.m.” A work stoppage will trigger an Emergency Schools Closure of every KPBSD school.*

The District was caught by surprise with the 72-hour strike notice Friday evening because this afternoon the Associations’ spokesperson and District spokesperson were communicating with the fact that the District was preparing a counter-offer that would meet the cost concerns of salary and health care. The counter-offer would have potentially resulted in a Tentative Agreement.

On Saturday, the District will begin daily communications with families and staff about what to expect and how to prepare for the emergency schools closure that is slated to begin on Tuesday, September 17, 2019. The emergency schools closure will continue until a Tentative Agreement is reached between the Associations and District.

Links

2019-09-13 Work Stoppage Notice to KPBSD

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Collective Bargaining Update: September 13, 2019

News Release: KPBSD logo

Collective Bargaining Update: September 13, 2019 

Soldotna, September 13, 2019—The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District (KPBSD) has requested additional information related to the September 12, 2019, offer from the Kenai Peninsula Education Association (KPEA) and Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association (KPESA).

The Associations’ included new retroactivity language in their health care proposal, and the requested information is for their method of calculating additional projected costs to the District. The District will be analyzing and reviewing those costs and intends to develop a counter-offer to bridge the health care divide.

Link: Collective bargaining webpage with proposals, meeting times, and handouts

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9/12/19 Collective Bargaining: KPBSD offer to KPEA and KPESA

News ReleaseKPBSD logo

September 12, 2019 Collective Bargaining Update: KPBSD offer to KPEA and KPESA

Soldotna, September 12, 2019—This evening at bargaining, the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District (KPBSD) presented a new offer to the Kenai Peninsula Education Association (KPEA) and Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association (KPESA) that offers fair salary increases and provides our employees additional money to address ongoing health care cost concerns. KPEA and KPESA offered a counter proposal to KPBSD that the District is evaluating. Links to the 9/12/19 offers are at the end of this information about the KPBSD offer to KPEA and KPESA:

 

  1. This evening, the District offered to help reduce the health care contributions of its employees by depositing $918,748 into the employees’ health care reserve (savings) account. An account controlled by the employee representatives on the health care program committee. This additional amount of money is beyond what the independent Arbitrator recommended. This deposit is $250,000 more than the District’s August 24, 2019 offer.

 

  1. This evening, the District offered to further increase its current contributions to the cost of health insurance by $3,600 per year per employee health plan member. Also not part of the Arbitrator’s recommendations, and $1,800 per year per employee health plan member more than the District’s August 24, 2019 offer. This portion of the District’s health care offer is an additional $859,186 more than the District’s August 24, 2019 offer.

 

  1. The Arbitrator, after two days of hearings and hundreds of pages of exhibits, concluded, “The evidence is irrefutable that it is costing [the District] more to provide health care coverage…than virtually all of the other comparable Districts.”

 

  1. The Arbitrator also recognized that the District’s employees are paying higher costs than those comparable Districts as well. She concluded that “This is reflective of numerous factors, not limited to the levels of coverage, the utilization of benefits, age of the workforce, access to care, and importantly, the inability to spread costs and risk over a larger population.” The District is not a contributing factor to the employees’ higher medical costs.

 

  1. This evening, the District’s offer continued to follow the recommendations of the independent Arbitrator by increasing the KPEA and KPESA salary schedules by 3.5% over the FY19-FY21 duration of the Negotiated Agreement.

 

  1. In addition, the District’s offer continued the Arbitrator’s recommendation that employees without access to higher salary schedule steps or the availability of a new column, receive up to an additional 3.5% salary increase over those fiscal years honoring their longevity with the District.

 

  1. The salary schedule increases are in addition to automatic step increases built into those schedules for eligible employees. Those increases average 4.98% per year for KPESA, and 2.67% per year for KPEA.

 

  1. Only the District, through its elected Board of Education, can balance District’s revenues and expenditures to ensure that the highest quality educational programs are provided. Over the years, heart-wrenching decisions have been made by the Board to close schools and eliminate positions, among other things, to balance the District’s budget. The Board will be facing those decisions again in this next budget cycle.

Following the 9/12/19 District offer, KPEA and KPESA presented a counter offer that the District is evaluating.

Links

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FASD Awareness Day 9/9 at 9:09 AM

Sept. 9, 2019 is International Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Awareness Day.

Graphic 1 Support

FASD awareness day started on 9/9/99 to remind everyone that a woman can remain alcohol fee for all nine months of pregnancy.

At 9:09 AM, on 9/9, is the time and date FASD is recognized throughout the world. The time is today for everyone  to take part in a cultural change to prevent FASD, and to remember the importance, at the school level, of understanding the impact of this invisible disability. The CDC estimates that 2% to 5% of the total population is impacted by FASD. Clayton Holland, Director of Student Support Services said, “If we apply that percentage to the KPBSD we would have close to 400 students who are impacted, with many of them not being identified with FASD, but likely having significant struggles in the classroom and at home.”

 

“The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is a leader in schools throughout North America to address FASD, and we are steadily working to increase our capacity to successfully address the many challenges faced by students with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). To date, over 600 KPBSD staff members in the last 10 years have participated in trainings with FASD expert, and Homer resident, Deb Evensen. Our long term goal is that every staff member is trained to understand the impact that FASD has on a student, how FASD impacts academics, behavior, and social-emotional health, and for staff to learn what will help students with FASD be successful at school. We also want to educate our students on the danger of prenatal exposer to alcohol and provide supports for families.” –Clayton Holland, Director of Student Support Services

Everyone is encouraged to learn more about FASD by going to The National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome website. This is an excellent resource for all KPSBD staff who work with students experiencing FASD. www.nofas.org

Graphic 3 DontMix

 

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PEAKS student results now in PowerSchool for parents

PEAKS-logo 2019

AKScience-logo 2019

September 5, 2019

Dear KPBSD parents and guardians,

The 2019 Spring Performance Evaluation for Alaska’s School (PEAKS) student results is available for your review on September 6, 2019, in the PowerSchool Parent Portal.*

“PEAKS is one assessment used to help provide a picture of how our students are doing to meet state standards,” said Superintendent John O’Brien. “PEAKS is significantly more in line with national expectations and even though we do not receive district data on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), we believe our results on NAEP would mirror PEAKs results. We are proud of what our students accomplish with the education they receive in our schools and that they are ready for life, college, and career when they earn a KPBSD diploma.”

If you have any questions, kindly contact your child’s school. The State of Alaska PEAKS webpage offers additional information you may find helpful, and you can read the KPBSD letter to parents from the Director of Assessments for additional information from the school district.

*instructions to locate the report in PowerSchool

Sincerely,
Assessment Department, Kenai Peninsula Borough School District

www.KPBSD.org

Opt-in to receive SMS messages from KPBSD, if you have a cellular phone number listed in your PowerSchool contact, Text Y or YES to 67587.

The mission of the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is to empower all learners to positively shape their futures.

 

KPBSD logo

How federal funds benefit KPBSD in 2019-2020 and beyond

2019-09 Federal Programs

Understand how you can assist, and why it matters

“Federal funds provide critical resources for students and teachers, alike. Completion of the Student Programs application–even by families who don’t want free or reduced price meals–is important to the continuation of these federally funded programs. During this time of shrinking state financial resources, doing all we can to maximize our access to federal resources is even more important.” –Dr. Christine Ermold, Director of Professional Development and Federal Programs

In 1965, federal funds were established through the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) to ensure that all children have a fair and equal opportunity to education.

KPBSD has developed programs to support struggling learners all around the district, and various forms are included in school registration packets each year to help identify qualifying students and families.

Your voluntary participation to complete these forms–even if you do not think you qualify-could assist the entire school district. Visit your school office to complete the forms if you haven’t done so yet. In the 2019-2020 school year, $5.6 million* in federal funds will provide supports for some of the most vulnerable youth in our communities.

Read and download the FY20 Federal Allocations PDF to see amounts and number of students and staff in various categories.

*The annual federal tax dollars that KPBSD receives are based on identifying and documenting qualified students and families. Additional federal funds are allocated to Student Support Services (special education) and through the Carl Perkins grant, which supports career and technical education.

  • Title 1 purpose is to provide fair and equitable educational opportunities to students identified as economically disadvantaged. KPBSD’s targeted assistance provides support to identified pre-kindergarten, kindergarten, first, and second graders in those schools with more than 35% of enrolled students identified as economically disadvantaged. The ten Title I prekindergarten programs currently serve 217 students. Title I has also provided reading support to 350 kindergarten, first and second grade students in nineteen Title I schools.

 

  • Title 1C Migrant supports the needs of migratory students across the district. In order to be identified as migratory, students must have traveled away from home a minimum of seven nights and eight days due to economic necessity. KPBSD has 400 migrant students enrolled in the district.

 

  • McKinney Vento provides clothing, school supplies and transitional services for homeless youth so that they experience consistent, uninterrupted learning opportunities.

 

  • Title ID Delinquent/Neglected and Youth in Detention provide staffing, professional development, and academic activities to Marathon School, Kenai’s youth detention facility.

 

  • Title IIA Professional Development funds support the improvement of teacher and principal quality including training on curriculum resources, teacher collaboration opportunities, administrative effective instruction training, new teacher induction, and other professional development events.

 

  • Title IIIA English Learners provides teacher and tutor training in differentiation strategies to support identified EL students. KPBSD has 332 EL students representing 23 languages.

 

  • Title IVA Student Support and Academic Enrichment supports activities directed at well-rounded educational opportunities, safe and healthy students, and the effective use of technology.

 

  • Title VI Indian Education supports tutoring to Native youth in KPBSD middle and high schools. Last year, 68% of students receiving tutoring services through Title VI demonstrated academic improvement.

 

  • E-Rate funds are used to support telecommunication infrastructure within and between schools. These funds are based on a tiered system of the district’s economically disadvantaged eligibility rate.

 

To learn more about KPBSD federal programs, go to http://bit.ly/FederalProgramsKPBSD

Download the FY20 Federal Allocations PDF to see amounts and number of students and staff in various categories.

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KPBSD logo

KPBSD outdoor activity and travel restrictions removed!

Good news!

All restrictions for outdoor activities due to air quality, and activity related travel between Sterling and Cooper Landing on Sterling Highway are removed effective September 3, 2019.

Cooper Landing School will reopen September 4, 2019, on a normal schedule!

Thank you to everyone for your patience throughout the past 14 days while these restrictions were in place for student and staff safety.

 2019-09-03 sports and activity travel restriction removed

KPB Office of Emergency Management Release: September 3, 2019 Cooper Landing and Sterling Alert Levels Reduced; Pilot Cars Gone:

“The Great Basin Incident Management Team 1 managing the Swan Lake Fire, in coordination with the Kenai Peninsula Borough Office of Emergency Management, has changed the alert levels in Cooper Landing and Sterling which is reflective of the hard work of fire crews and the recent change in weather.  The wetter conditions and cooler temperatures projected through mid-September, support this decision.

Cooper Landing and Sterling residents should remain aware and prepared however, until a fire-season ending weather transition occurs. Fire managers say several inches of rain across all areas of the Swan Lake Fire are needed before the fire will be identified as “controlled”.

On the Sterling Highway, traffic will resume normal operations without pilot cars, however, drivers may continue to see them in road construction zones. Motorists are encouraged to use caution as fire-weakened trees, which can fall over, remain a hazard. Motorists should drive with headlights on at all times and be aware of fire personnel and vehicles still in the fire area. Skilak Lake Road remains closed.”

 

Helpful alerts:

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Healthcare offers – KPBSD contribution on behalf of employee

2019-08 health care proposals
  • The teacher & support staff unions want the school district to pay $27,076 per year for each employee member in the school district health care program.
  • The school district offered to pay $24,068.
  • The difference of $3,008 per year, per employee, in the 2019-2020 school year, is $ 3,224,972.
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