Yupiit School District

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Yupiit School District
Akiachak, Alaska and surrounding communities
United States
District information
Grades PK-12[1]
Established 1984
Students and staff
Students 460[1]
Teachers about 50
Staff about 100
Other information
Schedule August to May[2]
Website www.yupiit.org

The Yupiit School District serves students in the Akiachak, Akiak, and Tuluksak communities in the Bethel Census Area of the U.S. state of Alaska.[3]

Local Control[edit]

The district was established in 1984 for the purpose of bringing local control to the schools. Initial goals of the district included: knowledge of Yup'ik culture, skills, and values, preparation for advanced education and work, and the ability to communicate in the native language and in English. Later, the district implemented a curriculum based on the Yup'ik culture.[4]

The school is governed by an elected board with seven members serving three year terms.[5]

Yup'ik culture[edit]

The school district offers dual-immersion classes in the Yup'ik culture at the elementary level and Yup'ik studies and Yup'ik language classes at the secondary level.[6]

Students learn skills such as traditional fishing, caribou hunting, and dog-mushing. Students at the Tuluksak school dog-mush in competition.[7]


  • Akiachak School, grades K-12, 209 students.[1] This campus also houses a public library.[8]
  • Akiak School, grades PK-12, 101 students.[1] This campus also houses a public library.[9]
  • Tuluksak School, grades PK-12, 150 students.[1] This campus also houses a public library.[10]


Of the 234 students enrolled in grades 3 through 10 during the week of standardized testing in 2007, 227 were "Alaskan Native or American Indian," 3 were Caucasian, and 4 were Multi-Ethnic.[11]

No Child Left Behind[edit]

Based on test scores of the 2006-2007 school year

Of the 245 students tested in grades 3 through 10, 30.0% were proficient or better in reading, 23.6% in writing, and 26.7% in mathematics. The graduation rate was 43%. The Yupiit School District failed to make adequate yearly progress for the 4th consecutive year under No Child Left Behind.[11]

Based on test scores of the 2007-2008 school year

Of the 231 students in grades 3 through 10, 18% were proficient in language-arts and 22% were proficient in mathematics. The district failed to make adequate yearly progress.[12]

School funding lawsuit[edit]

In 2004, the Yupiit School District, the NEA-Alaska labor union, and several other school districts sued the state (Moore v. Alaska), asking for additional funding and educational programs. In 2007, the court ruled for the state. In his ruling, the judge cited the Yupiit School District when it said "the state must be more aggressive in overseeing troubled school districts" and ruled that the state exams were unfair.[13][14][15][16]

Sexual assault lawsuits[edit]

In 2011, Michael Bowman, a teacher from Montana, was accused of sexually assaulting multiple underage school girls. A $2 million civil lawsuit was settled between the Yupiit School District and nine Alaska native female students and two adults who were allegedly assaulted by Bowman.[17][18]

In 2015, a female teacher filed a lawsuit against the Yupiit School District alleging "She was subjected to discrimination and harassment during her employment leading to a sexual assault".[18][19]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Schools in Yupiit School District, Greatschools.net, retrieved 2008-12-04
  2. ^ Why Teach Here Archived October 5, 2008, at the Wayback Machine., Yupiit School District, retrieved 2008-12-04
  3. ^ a b About YSD, Yupiit School District, retrieved 2008-12-04
  4. ^ Sternberg, Robert J., et al., "Triarchically-Based Instruction and Assessment of Sixth-Grade Mathematics in a Yup’ik Cultural Setting in Alaska," Gifted and Talented International - Volume 21 Number 2: December 2006, retrieved 2008-12-05
  5. ^ School Board Archived October 5, 2008, at the Wayback Machine., Yupiit School District, retrieved 2008-12-04
  6. ^ Curriculum Archived October 5, 2008, at the Wayback Machine., Yupiit School District, retrieved 2008-12-04
  7. ^ Klump, Jennifer, et al., Culturally Responsive Practices for Student Success: A Regional Sampler, p. 19-23
  8. ^ Akiachak School/Community Library, retrieved 2008-12-04
  9. ^ Akiak School/Community Library, retrieved 2008-12-04
  10. ^ Tuluksak School/Community Library, retrieved 2008-12-04
  11. ^ a b Yupiit School District: District Report Card for 2006-2007 School Year[permanent dead link], retrieved 2008-12-04
  12. ^ 2008 District AYP Worksheets 2007-2008 Adequate Yearly Progress - School District: Yupiit Schools, retrieved 2008-12-04
  13. ^ Associated Press, "State seeks school suit dismissal" extract, Anchorage Daily News, p. B1, 2004-08-14
  14. ^ Court Rules in State of Alaska's Favor in Education Case Archived July 26, 2011, at the Wayback Machine., original source: "Alaska Governor," 2007-06-25, retrieved 2008-12-05
  15. ^ Pesznecker, Katie Exit exam unfair, Anchorage Daily News, 2007-06-22, retrieved 2008-12-05
  16. ^ Alaska judge calls for more school oversight.(BRIEFINGS: Inside the Law) 2007-10-01, retrieved 2008-12-05
  17. ^ Medred, Craig (17 January 2015). "Sexual abuse allegations expose simmering racial tensions in rural Alaska". Alaska Dispatch News. Alaska. Retrieved 23 April 2016. 
  18. ^ a b St Louis, Julie (23 December 2015). "Rural Alaska Teacher Tells of Sexual Assault". Courthouse News Service. Alaska. Retrieved 23 April 2016. 
  19. ^ Sottile, Leah (22 April 2016). "When a Woman Is Raped in Rural Alaska, Does Anyone Care?". Broadly (Vice). Alaska. Retrieved 23 April 2016.