FY 2011 Awards

Abstracts of 2011 New Grant Award Recipients in Rank Order

S356A110054 – Yukon-Koyukuk School                          

The Yukon-Koyukuk School District’s (YKSD) Bridge Project will serve Alaska Native students in grades 7-12 by expanding the capacity of our Career and Technical Education CTE programs to better engage our students by offering two health Science academies annually and increasing our current course offerings. The Bridge Project will 1) introduce middle school students to a variety of high growth careers and prepare them to make decisions about their high school programs of study; and 2) help high school students develop relevant and transferrable skills and knowledge, make informed career preparation decisions, and prepare to effectively compete in a global economy. Our objectives are to increase YKSD 1) graduation rates; 2) proficiency in reading, writing, and mathematics; 3) student access to academic and career support; and 4) student preparation for post-secondary careers or education. As a result of this project we anticipate the following outcomes: participating students will 1) successfully graduate; 2) increase credits towards graduation; 3) report greater sense of school relevancy; 4) be proficient on the Alaska High School Graduation Qualifying Exam in math, reading and writing; 5) have increased access to career counseling and support; and 6) graduate with credits leading to an A.A.S. degree and/or a certificate that makes them immediately employable. Services will be available for 500 students enrolled in our nine communities (Allakaket, Hughes, Huslia, Kaltag, Koyukuk, Manley, Minto, Nulato, and Ruby) and our Raven Correspondence School. Our health care academies will take place in Galena and Aniak, and will serve 24 YKSD students annually and additional students from our partnering districts.


S356A110039 – Kodiak Island Borough School District               

The Kodiak Island Borough School District, with its three consortium partners (Kodiak Area Native Association, Native Village of Afognak and the Alutiiq Museum) developed their Engaging Native Learners in Virtual Education Now (ENLIVEN) project goal: To engage Alaska Native learners in improved virtual education opportunities to reduce barriers, increase academic rigor, foster vision-setting and integrate culture into their learning experience, resulting in lower student transiency, increased academic performance and increased post-secondary success. The following objectives are developed to ensure goals attainment: (1) Increase Cultural Orientation and Integration; (2) Improve Rural/Town Linked Virtual Learning; (3) Improve Virtual Learning Training; (4) Provide Intensive Student Enrichment Activities; and (5) Develop Alutiiq Language Curriculum and Formalize Instruction. The ENLIVEN Project is designed to attain two applicable priorities. Priority 1 is continuing and enhancing the active participation of our Alaska Native regional non-profit and Tribal partners and Priority 2 is improving the Effectiveness and Distribution of Effective Teachers or Principals.

The following objective performance measures have been established: (1) Increase Native student performance in language arts and mathematics; (2) Reduce the Native drop-out rate; (3) Increase instructional capacity; (4) Increase Native parent satisfaction; (5) Increase Elder participation in governance and instructional activities; and (6) Integrate successful strategies into District on a self-sustaining basis by FY 2014. The ENLIVEN Project will serve approximately 502 Alaska Native students and their families in the six schools within the City of Kodiak and eight rural schools (Akhiok, Karluk, Larsen Bay, Old Harbor, Ouzinkie and Port Lions).

S356A110047 – Alaska Humanities Forum                       

The Alaska Humanities Forum (AKHF) is building upon the success of its Rose Urban Rural Exchange program (established in 2000 with funding from the U.S. Department of Education’s Alaska Native Education program) Educator Cross-Cultural Immersion experience designed to assist urban teachers in meeting cross-cultural competencies to better understand their Alaska Native students. The AKHF will implement Creating Cultural Competence of Rural Early Career Teachers Using the Educator Cross-Cultural Immersion Model (C3 Project), leading a consortium composed of Maniilaq Association, an Alaska Native Regional Nonprofit organization (Priority 1), two at-risk rural Alaska school districts, and the Alaska Statewide Mentor Project (ASMP a partnership between the University of Alaska and the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development). Through a cross-cultural immersion experience for two cohorts of 30 Early Career Teachers new to rural Alaska, an accredited graduate course in Multicultural Education, followed by a two year mentorship for ASMP, participants will demonstrate increased knowledge of cross-cultural competencies and the development of culturally responsive teaching strategies in participants, and new teacher preparedness. The expected results are that identified low-performing schools in partner districts (Priority 3) will be able to demonstrate increased retention rates among new teachers and, therefore, increased student achievement in Language Arts and Math. The project’s objectives include 60 Early Career Teachers building cross-cultural competency through a series of pre-employment and early career experiences, participating in and passing a 3.0 credit graduate Multicultural Ed course, and 57 participants completing a two year mentorship. Additionally, in schools where participant teachers are assigned, Language Arts and Math AYP scores will increase each year from the baseline of FY10.


S356A110035 – University of Alaska Southeast

Objectives and Activities: The University of Alaska Southeast proposes six objectives and associated activities: 1) Work with program partners to build on, expand and refine Preparing Indigenous Teacher and Administrators for Alaska’s Schools PITAAS recruitment, marketing and outreach efforts on a statewide scale; 2) Mentor Alaska Native teacher candidates in providing culturally relevant instruction to improve Alaska K-12 schools; 3) Support Alaska Native students whose goal is to become a teacher in Alaska schools in the acquisition of strong academic skills and rich indigenous knowledge to support the learning of K-12 students; 4) Provide financial aid and culturally relevant academic support for up to 40 Alaska Native juniors, seniors and graduate students enrolled at UAS; 5) Continue to strengthen and refine the alignment of UAS teacher/administrator education curriculum with Alaska Standards for Culturally Responsive Teachers and Schools; and 6) Continue to strengthen and refine the PITAAS program through assessment and Native community leadership. Priorities: UAS partners with Sealaska Heritage Institute, a regional Alaska Native educational organization, to implement PITAAS. Outcomes: 10 new Alaska Native teachers graduating per year (30 total) Number of Participants: 60 college students per year. Sites: Instruction provided via e-learning technology and at one site located in Juneau.


S356A110037 – Bering Strait School District

Bering Strait School District (BSSD) is comprised of 15 isolated, rural schools with a student population that is 99% Alaska Native. Four of the schools are identified as “persistently lowest performing” by the State, seven have not made AYP, and all are high poverty. The Graduation and Academic Improvement for Native Students (GAINS) project works to improve graduation rates and academic success in all of these schools, with the most intensive work focused in the four “persistently lowest performing” schools. Objectives 1 & 2: Identify Potential Dropouts and Provide Supportive Services – Each project year, BSSD’s on–time graduation rate will exceed the State average graduation rate of 60%. Objective 3: Build Teacher, School and District Capacity to Ensure Graduation and Academic Success – By the end of three years, 100% of BSSD staff will be qualified to implement best practices in Language Literacy, Academic Language and Cultural Competency. Applicable Priorities Met: Priority 1 – Consortia that include an Alaska Native regional nonprofit organization: Kawerak, Inc., is the regional non–profit arm of the Bering Straits Native Corporation. Priority 2 –Improving the Effectiveness of Teachers or Principals: we provide extensive professional development to all BSSD central office administrators, principals and teachers. Priority 3 –Turning Around Persistently Lowest-Achieving Schools: Savoonga, Gambell, Stebbins and Shishmaref are identified by the State as 2011–2012 School Improvement Grant (1003g) eligible Tier I “persistently lowest–achieving” schools. Participants: GAINS will directly serve 185 teachers, 15 principals, six district level administrators and 1,619 Native students from the BSSD. Dissemination will reach school staff from 17 other rural districts comprising 141 schools with 12,776 Native students. Number and Location of Sites: All 15 BSSD schools will receive direct services. Seventeen (17) similar rural districts will take part in dissemination activities.



S356A110032 – Wrangell Public Schools               

The SYSTEMS Consortium is comprised of five rural school districts, Alaska Island Community Services (a non-profit service agency), and the Wrangell Cooperative Association. The five school districts are Klawock City Schools, the Craig City School District, Hydaburg City Schools, the Annette Island School District, and Wrangell Public Schools. The SYSTEMS Consortium schools serve approximately 648 Alaska Native students K-12. The free and reduced lunch rate in each school is 50% -100%, indicating high rates of poverty in the consortium communities. Research indicates that students who qualify for free and reduced lunch programs typically score significantly lower in the areas of science and mathematics. The SYSTEMS Program will work with students, teachers, and communities in the five consortium districts to further the goals of STEM education to help ensure our students have access to the opportunities of tomorrow. The SYSTEMS Project will find common ground between Alaska Native and Western science and thinking. In indigenous settings, students best understand explanations of natural phenomena if they are cast first in indigenous terms to which they can relate, and then explained in Western terms. The SYSTEMS Project will provide intensive, culturally relevant, place based STEM education experiences, support for basic skills, professional development for teachers in STEM curriculum development and delivery and a diverse public relations campaign to help our communities be aware of the importance of STEM education in schools.

GOAL I: Alaska Native student preparedness for college and career in STEM subjects will substantially improve as a result of participation in the SYSTEMS Project.

GOAL II: Teacher effectiveness in instructing Alaska Native students in STEM topics will increase through enhanced awareness and skills in culturally relevant, place based, STEM education as a result of the SYSTEMS Project.

S356A110007 – Yuut Elitnaurviat, Inc

Yuut is well positioned to provide relevant, in-region educational and vocational training that will help our students move on to high-wage employment and post secondary education. Basic high school attainment continues to be a barrier for many youth and adults in our service area, the remote Yukon Kuskokwim Delta region of southwestern Alaska. The Yuut Elitnaurviat GED Programs will expand existing Adult Basic Education Services to better meet growing needs. Twelve (12) village-based tutors will be hired to deliver face-to-face instruction in larger villages with the greatest need. The program will also expand distance delivered programs that have been customized and piloted for our unique indigenous population. All services will also include career guide services so that students see obtaining a GED as just the beginning of a pathway to higher education, vocational training and relevant employment. The Yuut Elitnaurvait GED Programs will create tutoring programs in 12 remote Alaska Native Villages, expand delivery of three locally-piloted and proven distance delivered courses, provide correspondence instruction to at least twenty students in villages without a tutor, and offer one-on-one customize career guide counseling to all program participants.

S356A110004 – Chugach School District                                       

The goal of the Alaska Native Early Childhood Education Phase II project is to increase the percent of Alaska Native children participating in district preschool programs who consistently demonstrate school readiness on developmental indicators year to year. Chugach School District will serve 130 3 – 5 year old children for preschool in 25 rural Alaskan villages and school sites in four school districts. The objectives are to provide access to preschool for children in 25 rural Alaskan villages who would not otherwise have access; to provide regular, structured support and resources to parents of preschool children with specific strategies to promote cognitive, social, and emotional development; to increase retention, training, and support of project staff through the implementation of performance pay, recognition incentives, and regular professional development opportunities; and to strengthen partnership early childhood curriculum design and delivery by implementing a five-year curriculum review and training cycle. The primary outcome is that the GPRA indicator for early childhood will be measured using the AGS Early Screening Profile and the Revised Alaska Developmental Profile (RADP).


S356A110010 – Alaska Native Heritage Center

The Alaska Native Heritage Center (ANHC) is proposing a three year project whose goal is to develop and implement a program for a total of 335 Alaska Native/American Indian students in grades 6-9 within the Anchorage School District that will increase their successful engagement in school by intervening prior to, or at the point of, in- or out-of-school suspension or expulsion. This evidence-based program, while not included in U.S. Department of Education priority areas, will be unique in that it specifically targets youth during a critical window during the transition years, addressing poor attendance and behaviors that lead to disengagement, underachievement, and dropping out. Project objectives include 1) Collaborate with the Anchorage School District to develop a means of outreach and referral or direct intervention with Native students and their families for low attendance, poor behavior, suspension, expulsion. 2) Develop and implement culturally-based after school programming for students aimed at improving students’ knowledge of traditional values, social-emotional skills, personal responsibility, and positive identity. 3) Assign students to Youth Coordinators who will directly assist them, and their families, in improving school engagement. 4) Develop and implement services to help students use OSS time productively and re-engage successfully in school. 5) Develop and implement family engagement strategies including monthly family night programs to help parents engage youth in school, bridge parents and schools, and build community connectedness 6) Coordinate services with and refer students/families to appropriate educational tutoring, mental health or social services, or out-of-district (correspondence) schools for expelled students. 7) Coordinate services with school personnel to ensure the best outcomes for students. Services will be offered in local schools, at students’ homes, and on-site at ANHC. Outcomes will include increased attendance, increased positive classroom engagement, increased number of grade 9 students “on-track to graduate” and increased academic achievement.

S356A110040 – Anchorage School District

Project Ki’l II (Boy): Promoting Academic Success for Alaska Native Boys Project Ki’l II (“boy”, Dena’ina Athabascan) is a three-year project that will meet the unique educational needs of Alaska Native boys. Ki’l II is an expansion of the Anchorage School District’s (ASD) Project Ki’l which, since 2008, has resulted in academic gains and narrowing of the achievement gap. Ki’l II empowers Alaska Native boys for academic success through emphasis on social-emotional learning (SEL), cultural responsiveness, and family involvement. The goal is to increase school success for Alaska Native boys. Objectives address annual average increases in percentage of K-5 boys who score “proficient” on district and state assessments, with narrowing of the gap between Native boys’ scores and comparison groups; improved school attendance; boys’ SEL growth; use of culturally responsive educational practices; and parental involvement. Activities, based on traditional Native values and the Mind, Body, and Spirit of boys, include “MAP” graphic long-term academic action plans for success, cultural/academic/PE events for families, after school clubs, interaction with Native role models and mentors from the community through our consortium/partnerships with six Alaska Native organizations, “talking circle” parent support groups, parent training and summer camps for the critical transitions between grade levels, and professional development for teachers in culturally responsive education and SEL. Expected outcomes are Native boys who are connected to their culture and successful in school, parents who are involved with and comfortable in school, and culturally responsive schools that intentionally develop SEL skills. We will serve 400 Alaska Native boys per year in grades Pre-K-5 from eight ASD elementary schools, 50 Pre-K boys per year from Cook Inlet Native Head Start, and 30 teachers and school staff per year.

S356A110036 – Rural Alaska Community Action Program, Inc.

RurAL CAP Parents as Teachers (PAT) Project has established three goals, to: 1) Improve parenting skills and encourage parents to become advocates for their children’s education; 2) Increase children’s early literacy and school readiness skills; 3) Develop trained early childhood professionals within rural communities. Objectives include health and developmental screenings for early intervention, high quality, home based services and parent/child or group sessions that include literacy development. Activities will increase parenting skills, support parent involvement in children’s education, and develop a local base of early childhood specialists through professional training and support. Applicable priorities: a) Development and operation of home instruction programs for Alaska Native preschool children; b) Family literacy services; c) Recognizing educational needs and reflecting cultural diversity of Alaska Native families; d) Providing parenting education for parents and caregivers of Alaska Native children; e) Increasing children’s early literacy and school readiness skills; and f) Providing professional development activities for educators in rural communities. Proposed project outcomes: 1) Improved parenting capacity; 2) Increased parent knowledge of their child’s age appropriate development; 3) Increased parent involvement in children’s care and education; 4) Increased school readiness; 5) Competent early childhood educators. Number of participants to be served: 336 rural Alaskan prenatal to age 3 children not served by other programs and their parents, including 275 families and community members. Number and location of proposed sites: 14 rural communities: Alakanuk, Chevak, Emmonak, Haines, Kake, Kluti-Kaah, Kodiak, Marshall, Mountain Village, Napaskiak, Savoonga, Stebbins, Toksook Bay.

S356A110034 – Illisagvik College

The Ilisagvik College, Alaska’s only tribal college, will work in partnership with the North Slope Borough School District (NSBSD) and the Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope (ICAS) to establish Uqautchim Uglua, a culture-based learning center patterned after the language nest model, with a curriculum built from and designed to extend the Inupiat Learning Framework developed by the North Slope Borough School District. This program will be operated jointly by NSBSD and Ilisagvik College (Ilisagvik) as a lab school with advice from the Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope through a community advisory council. A cohort of Inupiaq students from communities across the North Slope will begin or extend their teacher training through onsite practica at Uqautchim Uglua (Language Nest) Learning Center coupled with residency coursework and distance learning modules through which they will earn AA degrees in Inupiaq Early Learning with an emphasis on language, cultural programming, community engagement and early childhood education. This degree will articulate with and inform a four-year degree in education through partnership with a four-year college or university. Additional small business coursework will empower village students to open preschool programs patterned after Uqautchim Uglua in their home villages. Coursework and in-service training will be extended to the existing staff of NSBSD and a core group of district teachers will be invited to participate in an action research project designed to examine the effects of culture-based instruction on student performance. The goal of this project is to both increase the numbers of effective new teachers and to improve the effectiveness of existing teachers within the NSBSD.

S356A110038 – Kake City School District

Kake City School District serves 86 geographically isolated youth in the Organized

Village of Kake; home to 580 residents and accessible only by ferry or airplane year-round. The

Organized Village of Kake is an Alaska Native Regional Non-Profit, making this application

eligible for Priority 1 preference points. Targeted young people are in desperate need of supports

at all levels to ultimately promote a population of students prepared to pursue career or

vocational training. Change must be made at the foundational level, creating systemic change in

the availability of opportunities and supports available to Kake youth in order to make a lasting

impact. To this end, a multi-faceted program has been developed by a consortium of local

stakeholders, including the Organized Village of Kake (a Federally Recognized Tribal

Government), Kake City School District, University of Southeast Alaska, Alaska’s Institute of

Technology, and Reconnecting Youth (a drug, violence, and suicide prevention agency).


S356A110016 – Craig City School District

The STRIVE Project is a remedial reading program that specifically addresses the

neurological processes involved in learning to read using researched-based, culturally

appropriate programs. The STRIVE Project has been implemented over the last three

years, and has proven to be a highly effective intervention. The program targets Alaska

Native students that fit the profile of dyslexia and will serve 150-200 students. Another

150 students will be served in their classrooms by the K-2 prevention model.



S356A110020 – Bering Strait School District

This project is a partnership among Bering Strait School District (BSSD), Kawerak,

Inc., the Alaska Native non-profit regional organization, and the Rural Alaska Community

Action Program (RurAL CAP). The objectives include hiring ECE teachers in four Head Start

classrooms with the goal of providing age-appropriate educational programs and language skills

to prepare preschool students for kindergarten; raising test scores in positive PPVT and

ESP/DIAL-3 domains and lowering scores in negative domains, particularly those dealing with

vocabulary; enhancing the Curiosity Corner (CC) curriculum by adding cultural units and

determining CC’s alignment with Alaska’s Early Learning Guidelines (ELGs); developing ECE

standards aligned with the Alaska ELGs, providing literacy bags as thematic resources for home

learning; and providing an Early Learning Specialist to travel to the four sites to train, guide,

support, and be a resource for the Head Start program. Through this project low-income minority preschool students will be better prepared to enter kindergarten. Additionally, the rural isolated Head Start programs will have certified ECE teachers to give Head Start educators daily, on-going training that will lead to sustainability. Approximately 100 students ages three and four will be served in the four project sites at Brevig Mission, Shishmaref, Savoonga, and Stebbins, Alaska.

S356A110051 – Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District

The Enanuaq Program is an academic and cultural collaboration between the Knik Tribal

Council and the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District. This community-based

developmental program provides educational opportunities and achievement by increasing

school readiness skills for over 90 Alaska Native preschool children ages three and four and

career readiness for over 180 Alaska Native high school students over the course of three years.

The program will focus on successfully transitioning students from preschool into

Kindergarten as well as from high school to college. Enanuaq will be housed in two local Title I

and SIG:(i) high schools in the district, Burchell High School and American Charter Academy.

The program utilizes an integrated approach supported by parents, Knik Tribal Council

members, district resources such as Indian Education staff, and Enanuaq program staff coming

together to instruct and model developmentally and culturally appropriate academic activities.

The Enanuaq Program will increase the academic proficiency of high school Alaska Native

students by providing academic assistance, guiding them through on-time graduation and

entrance to post-secondary education.

S356A110042 – Nenana City School District

The Nenana City School District (NCSD) goal of the NCSD STEM initiative is to enhance the educational services provided to Alaska Native (AN) students attending Nenana City School; improve the academic performance of AN students attending Nenana City School; and increase the readiness of our students to pursue STEM careers. Our objectives are to: develop and implement a complete STEM curriculum; improve students’ academic performance in the areas of reading, mathematics and science; enhance our teachers’ skills to teach and engage students in STEM curriculum; increase the percentage of AN students who graduate with a regular high school diploma in 4 years; increase the number of AN students who pursue STEM studies at the middle school, high school and post-secondary levels.