Remote Learning Parent Info Night

KPBSD parents, do you have questions about the KPBSD 100% Remote Learning Program and if it might be a fit for your child?

Informational Zoom Q&A for Parents

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

6:00-7:00 p.m.

Zoom link to attend: 

This informational session will provide an overview of the KPBSD 100% Remote Learning Program to parents and guardians who want to understand educational choices for Grades 1-12 in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District.

This program has limited capacity and the next window of enrollment for Remote Learning is October 18-22, 2021.

The live zoom event will include a welcome and program overview, followed by a question and answer session. For more information, go to the KPBSD Remote Learning website at

The mission of the KPBSD Remote Learning program is to provide a remote educational option to support the learning needs of KPBSD students and their families who have concerns about attending school in-person during the pandemic.

KPBSD 100% Remote Learning website

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Kenai Peninsula Middle College School is up and running

Kenai Peninsula Middle College School

In the 2020-2021 school year, the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District, through River City Academy (RCA), launched a middle college pilot program! The Kenai Peninsula Middle College School (KPMCS) is a partnership with Kenai Peninsula College (KPC) and creates a bridge between high school and college by providing eligible students the opportunity to exceed their high school academics through classes at KPC.

Tuition, books and fees are paid by KPBSD and students receive both high school and college credit while working toward their Associate of Arts degree and meeting their high school graduation requirements. Hosted through RCA, students benefit from the support of a collaborative learning environment, a cohort of middle college peers, and a structured mentoring program.

Twenty-one students from River City Academy, Soldotna High School, Kenai Central High School, and Nikolaevsk School joined the pilot in 2020, and earned more than 200 college credits. One family said that middle college, “provides access to more advanced classes for high school students. Additionally, it serves as an introduction into the college framework with extra support both at the college and at a local school.”

Class of 2021 Graduate plans

In the 2021-2022 school year, 35 students enrolled for the fall semester, and there is capacity for an additional 15 students to enroll in the second semester beginning in January 2022.

Fall 2021 Orientation at KPC

Learn more about the Kenai Peninsula Middle College School,

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Great Alaska Shakeout 10.21.21

Forty-two diverse schools in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District will participate in the Great Alaska ShakeOut “Drop, Cover, and Hold On” earthquake drill on October 21, 2021, at 10:21 a.m.
In addition, schools will conduct a radio check in conjunction with this drill.

To learn more, go to

Read about safety protocols in the KPBSD

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Alaska Speech-Language-Hearing recognizes three in the KPBSD

Celebrate! On September 25, 2021, during the annual Alaska Speech-Language-Hearing Association (AKSHA) convention, excellence in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District was highlighted, with current and retired staff receiving the Sourdough Award, Red Lantern Award, and the Lifetime Member Award with 20 or more years of outstanding history in clinical practice!

“The KPBSD is so fortunate to consistently have an outstanding speech department for our students. Our quality speech pathologists have energy and compassion, and continue to rise above any challenge that is presented. These awards and recognitions prove just that. I have worked closely and seen firsthand how their knowledge and expertise has been an integral part to help special education teams collaborate and assist students with the wide variety of communication needs in our school district. This statewide recognition is well deserved, and I feel honored to work with these fine individuals.”

–Amy Hagen, KPBSD Director of Student Support Services

Jackie Kempf, Speech Pathologist, received the Sourdough Award for outstanding contributions in SLP or Audiology!

The Sourdough Awardrecognizes an Audiologist and-or Speech Language Pathology (SLP) who demonstrates long-term dedication to issues in the state, advocacy, leadership, or outstanding clinical practice.

Over her career, Jackie Kempf has done an excellent job as a therapist and achieved a strong reputation as a school-based practitioner. A particular strength is working with students with significant communication delays and building language abilities from the preschool setting through 6th grade, specifically with children on the Autism Spectrum and with significant early developmental delays. Jackie has incorporated many integral elements of speech therapy, including PECS, Aug Com systems, visual supports, functional play and school routine mastery, pragmatic skills building, and narrative retell strategies into her therapy as needed in the overall support of global communication. She and her long time SLPA team are often the first speech pathology staff preschoolers encounter in KPBSD, and the early therapy she provides continues to make significant differences in those preschoolers’ abilities to enter primary grades with the building blocks necessary to grow academically and navigate their social worlds with success and understanding.

In addition to her clinical work, Jackie has given of her time to graduate students over the years as they undertake clinical hours, internships, and mentoring for their CCC’s, and her open and kind personality and enthusiasm for her students as people is infectious. She has for many years juggled high caseload numbers and complex cases spread over multiple sites with efficiency and fidelity. Her conviction that every child should have a voice is clear to see through the passion and dedication she has given her work as a school-based speech pathologist over the last two decades at KPBSD.

Robin Evans, retired and now a substitute SLP, received the Red Lantern Award for Outstanding Contributions in Rural Alaska!

The Red Lantern Award recognizes the unique challenges many AKSHA members work under to provide services to those in our rural areas.

Robin served as KPBSD’s Child Find Coordinator, bringing her expertise as a SLP. She traveled around the diverse KPBSD K-12 school district that includes several small schools and communities. She went beyond screening youngsters; many times her SLP expertise led her to complete a speech and language evaluation. This expedited the process of qualifying children for services. Robin’s care and concern for youngsters was evident. In addition, she eased the caseload for the SLP who would be servicing the child at their neighboring school. After Robin retired, she began her new adventures, travel and lifestyle, though she returned to KPBSD to assist in any way possible. She contracts her services, as well as provides substitute services for SLPs and special education teachers. Robin was a positive force who made a difference in the lives of children, families and communities.

Melody Spangler-Hatch, retired SLP, 1980-2012 was honored with the Lifetime Member Award for 20 or more years of outstanding history in clinical practice!

The Lifetime Member Award recognizes an outstanding history of clinical practice in the field of speech language pathology and-or audiology within Alaska and AKSHA. Nominees must have practiced at least 20 years as an Audiologist and/or SLP and been an AKSHA member for 10 or more years.

“For the past three plus years, I have been the SLP serving the Seward area schools with Seward Elementary as my home base,” wrote nominator Cecilia Deatherage. “Being in Seward in Melody’s old position, and her same room (30+ years), I repeatedly hear from many parents about their speech therapy and how she helped them … now it’s their kids. Though I only really know her from KPBSD SLP meetings over the years and at AKSHA conferences, the consistent positive feedback I hear about her led me to this nomination.”

Julie DeBoard, Special Educator and former speech student at Seward Elementary, shared, “Melody Spangler was my speech teacher in my second-grade year. In one year, she helped me master my R & S sounds. I still remember using the clicker to identify where in the word I heard my R sounds. Later on, I had the opportunity to work with Melody Spangler Hatch. I learned so much from this wonderful colleague. She taught me about paperwork, conducting myself in IEP meetings, interacting with the staff, and her love of her students was contagious. She was not only a colleague, but is also a very dear friend to this day! I saw her touch the lives of not only me, but also hundreds of students during her time at Seward Elementary School Her smile was infectious and it makes me so happy to see her plaque on the wall by her old room.”

Kathi Davis, head secretary and parent of a speech student at Seward Elementary, wrote, “Melody Spangler Hatch–what a remarkable woman, a wonderful friend, and a person that is a joy to have in your life! Melody has always done so much for the community of Seward and has an amazing giving heart. Seward was blessed the day she arrived so many years ago, met the love of her life, and made this her home. She was a speech therapist at Seward Elementary for 32 years and taught hundreds of students how to speak correctly during her tenure here. I was one of the lucky parents having a child be a successful recipient of her love, dedication and talent. My son no longer sounds like he is from Brooklyn!”

Discover: Who are Speech-Language Pathologists & what do they do?

AKSHA association

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No school for students

Friday, October 15, 2021, is an inservice day,
no school for students*

*calendar variance: Kachemak-Selo, Nikolaevsk, Port Graham, Razdolna, and Voznesenka schools are in session

KPBSD Calendar and Variance Calendars

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Welding program bonds school and local business

Celebrations happen every day in KPBSD schools, and a new $10,000 grant will support the Soldotna High School Welding program!

Students experience multiple pathways to life after high school, and some students receive certifications and trade expertise, then go straight into a career after graduation, others pursue additional education at a college, university, trade school, or join the military, and others take a gap year or time to determine what their next best move is. Everyone can learn skills in high school through career and technical education (CTE) courses, and Airgas USA, a leading single-source supplier of gases, welding equipment, supplies, and safety products, awarded the Soldotna High School welding program a $10,000 grant.

Dan Grove, the account manager of the Kenai Airgas branch, nominated and submitted a grant proposal, recognizing Soldotna High School in revitalizing the high school welding program with the industry expert Clyde Swaby. Airgas identified Soldotna High based on the education alignment with local industry needs through oil refineries, offshore platforms, fishing, and construction industries.

Soldotna High School was one out of 23 schools across the nation to be awarded this grant!

-Dan Grove, account manager, Kenai Airgas


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Community FY23 Budget Development Meeting

Find all finance documents at

The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District requests input from staff, parents, students, and community members at a Districtwide FY23 Budget Development meeting. All meetings begin at 6:00 PM.

Central Peninsula Community
Thursday, October 7, 2021, 6:00 p.m., Soldotna High Library*

Homer Community
Tuesday, October 19, 2021, 6:00 p.m., Homer High Library

Seward Community
Wednesday, October 20, 2021, 6:00 p.m., Seward High Library

*October 7, 2021, 6:00 PM, is the only budget development meeting that will be also livestreamed and include a live Q&A via zoom.

Additional details and new finance information when it becomes available is posted on the Finance page of the KPBSD website at
If you have questions about these meetings, please call Natalie Bates at 907-714-8888.

October 7, 2021, KPBSD Budget Development Meeting Zoom Option:

Or One tap mobile :

    US: +17209289299, 88694754284#  or +19712471195, 88694754284#

Or Telephone:

    Dial (for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):

        US: +1 720 928 9299  or +1 971 247 1195  or +1 206 337 9723  or +1 213 338 8477  or +1 253 215 8782  or +1 602 753 0140

Webinar ID: 886 9475 4284

    International numbers available:

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KPBSD PEAKS assessment

September 30, 2021

Dear Parent or Guardian,

Students in grades 3-9 participated in the 2021 Performance Evaluation for Alaska’s Schools (PEAKS) summative assessment for English Language Arts (ELA), Mathematics, and Science. The Alaska Department of Education and Early Education (DEED) stated that, “Low participation rates due to COVID-19 warrant caution comparing results to prior years.” The 2021 results are only one part of the overall picture informing us about how well our students and schools are doing to meet all the grade level expectations identified by Alaska State Standards. Your child’s results are now available through the KPBSD PowerSchool Parent Portal.

Given the low overall participation rate and the high variability in participation among student groups, DEED cautions against comparing 2021 PEAKS data to previous years at the statewide level. Parents and educators can use individual student data from PEAKS, along with other local assessments, to inform decisions about instructional needs during the 2021-2022 school year. DEED has published a Parent Guide to Student Reports and FAQs online under the “results” tab.     

Typically, summative assessments guide intervention and targeted support activities for schools as directed by the Every Student Succeeds Act. However, the U.S. Department of Education waived accountability requirements for the 2021-2022 school year. DEED will continue to support ongoing school improvement efforts in local school districts, including stewardship of federal COVID relief funds.

Parents and Guardians have the authority to object to and withdraw their child from standards based assessments, or tests required by the State. The KPBSD Curriculum and Assessment Opt-Out Form must be completed annually and submitted to the school. The form can be found at this link:

You can find parent resources on the Alaska Department of Education PEAKS webpage: to assist with understanding these state required evaluations.

Student reports are available through the KPBSD PowerSchool Parent Portal. If you need help accessing these results, please contact your child’s school.


Kari Dendurent
Assistant Superintendent
Kenai Peninsula Borough School District

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Soldotna Montessori Charter School awarded 2021 National Blue Ribbon School

“It is a tremendous honor to be recognized for academic excellence as a 2021 National Blue Ribbon School. Our staff and families are dedicated to educating the whole child, and receiving this recognition is a tribute to each one’s effort. It is rewarding to see our students’ commitment to each other result in success, both in their academic endeavors and as difference-makers in the community.”

–John DeVolld, Soldotna Montessori Charter School principal

“This year’s cohort of honorees demonstrates what is possible when committed educators and school leaders create vibrant, welcoming, and affirming school cultures where rich teaching and learning can flourish,” said U.S. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona in a video announcement. “In the face of unprecedented circumstances, you found creative ways to engage, care for, protect, and teach our children. Blue Ribbon Schools have so much to offer and can serve as a model for other schools and communities so that we can truly build back better.”

The only school in Alaska to receive this distinguished honor in 2021, Soldotna Montessori School in Soldotna, Alaska, joins eleven other schools in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District (KPBSD) to achieve the National Blue Ribbon excellence designation. Nationwide, 325 schools are honored with 2021 National Blue Ribbon School recognition.

“We are very proud of Soldotna Montessori School and what they are doing for students in our district,” said Clayton Holland, superintendent. “The staff, students and parents should be commended for all of their hard work to make this school such a wonderful place for kids. This is a very well deserved award that exemplifies what is happening around the KPBSD. Congratulations to Soldotna Montessori School and keep up the great effort!”

“Soldotna Montessori Charter School, you have honored Alaska with your dedication to high standards in educating our kids,” said Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy. “Congratulations on being nationally recognized as an Exemplary High Performing School, an honor that I have no doubt comes, in part, from engaging students in creative field experiences outside the walls of the classroom.”


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New Collective Bargaining Agreements

Collective Bargaining Agreement

“I am very happy that KPBSD agreements with KPEA and KPESA were ratified and unanimously approved by the Board of Education. This is the first time that the District and the Associations have gone through the Interest Based Bargaining (IBB) process. It was a long, and not always an easy path, but everyone involved was open to ideas, assumed positive intent, and committed to working together. The process resulted in Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBA) that are fair, contain long needed language changes, and respect all staff members. I have a heartfelt thank you to everyone who was involved in this process.”

Superintendent Clayton Holland

New Negotiated Agreements for the
2021-2022, 2022-2023, and 2023-2024 School Years

On Monday, September 13, 2021, the KPBSD Board of Education approved the FY22-24 Kenai Peninsula Education Association (KPEA) and Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association (KPESA) Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBA).

On Thursday, September 2, 2021, KPEA and KPESA ratified and certified the Tentative Agreement (TA) reached with KPBSD for the FY22-24 school years.

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