Learning from rural Alaska

Two House committees are on their way to rural Alaska to see firsthand how education funds are being spent.

The House Community and Regional Affairs and House Education committees will visit Galena and Koyukuk this week for a glimpse into life in rural Alaska.

Galena is a town of about 500 people on the Yukon River and home to a statewide boarding school and distance education program. Known as IDEA, the Interior Distance Education of Alaska supports home school students throughout the state, including Juneau.

Representative Cathy Munoz chairs the Community and Regional Affairs Committee. She says the committees want to see the results of programs they’re funding.

“We altered the foundation formula in the last legislative session to increase funding for vocational education. We also funded the governor’s scholarship program, so we’re very interested in what school districts are doing to encourage and prepare students to take advantage of that opportunity once they graduate. And then we’re also investing in vocational education infrastructure throughout the state,” Munoz said. “We’re trying to get Alaskans prepared for the jobs that are going to be required as we move forward into the future.”

The lawmakers – from Juneau, Anchorage, Fairbanks and Stony River – will also stop in Koyukuk – a village of about 100 on the Yukon River.

Munoz says the committee hopes for a clearer picture of the unique rural subsistence economy, so legislators know better how to support the communities.

Recent headlines

  • Arctic Chinook exercise concludes

    Coast Guard wraps up Arctic exercises

    The series of simulated drills was known as the Arctic Chinook exercise and wrapped Thursday morning in Kotzebue, according to a Coast Guard press release.
  • Bacteria that causes botulism.

    Science and cooking collide to fight botulism

    Scientists are trying to learn how to prevent botulism in seal oil, a main ingredient in many traditional Alaska Native foods.
  • Earthquake Simulator

    Earthquake simulator will shake up Juneau

    Alaska's earthquake simulator will visit Wednesday, Aug. 31, to Thursday, Sept. 1, in downtown Juneau giving residents some emergency preparedness practice at an event that promises to shake, rattle and roll.
  • Dan DeBartolo is one of four candidates running for the Juneau School Board. (Courtesy of Dan DeBartolo)

    School board candidate juggles race and Facebook

    The creator of the Facebook page the Juneau Community Collective is running for public office and that created a problem. He had to figure out how to continue moderating political comments on the page without falling into a conflict of interest.


Playing Now: