LKSD shifts Kipnuk Schools to remote learning

Bethel, Alaska (October 31, 2022) – The Lower Kuskokwim School District (LKSD) Board of Education and Administration has decided to shift Chief Paul Memorial School (CPMS) in Kipnuk to remote learning beginning Wednesday, November 2, 2022, out of the concern for the physical safety for students and staff.

School will be closed on Monday and Tuesday, October 31st to November 1st to prepare for this transition.

This move to remote learning is prompted by recent developments in the community of Kipnuk, including:

1) tribal police stationed outside the school by the Kipnuk Traditional Council (KTC), who told students to go home as they were attempting to get to school;

2) purported representatives of KTC entering and occupying the school building causing disruption to the educational environment within the school; and

3) tribal police attempting to enter LKSD teacher housing at the direction of KTC.

On October 13, 2022, KTC issued Resolution 22-52, entitled “Resolution for School Students Not to Attend School Until Further Notice,” directing that students could not attend school “until further notice,” except for those students involved in athletic programs.

Despite this resolution, approximately 80% of students continued to attend school at CPMS. Unfortunately, on October 28, 2022, a large group of people purportedly representing KTC entered and occupied the school building and refused to leave, greatly disrupting the educational environment in the school. Thereafter, tribal police attempted to enter LKSD teacher housing units.

In light of these actions, the LKSD Board of Education and District administration has determined that a shift to remote learning is in the best interest of the safety of students and staff of CPMS. Some staff will be teaching remotely from the District office in Bethel. During this period of remote learning, the CPMS building will be closed to non-CPMS personnel, and all extracurricular activities are suspended.

It is LKSD’s goal to return to in-person learning as quickly as possible while ensuring the safety of staff and students. Any questions or concerns should be directed to LKSD Superintendent’s office at 907-543-4810.