Chugiak Chatter

March 3, 2022


There is no school for students tomorrow, Friday, March 4. We wish you a wonderful Spring Vacation and will see you at 8:40 a.m. on Monday, March 14 as we kick off Fourth Quarter!

Hello Chugiak Families,

We have enjoyed recent events at school that enabled kids to show off their learning and parents to join in the fun. Kindergarten friends performed a recitation for their school mates and were all abuzz about being “on stage” in front of others! Thank you to Mrs. Himes for sponsoring this year’s Spelling Bee. What a great motivator for kids to focus on words, their origins, meanings, and spellings! Congratulations to our Chugiak Bee champion, Kaiya Quimby, runner up, Konnor Alborn, and third place speller, Jude Miller. Our third grade classes set reading aims and read their way from Anchorage to Nome with the Iditaread! Today, their classes celebrated their reading successes with a shared film in the multipurpose room. Way to go, third grade readers!

Thank you, parents, for stopping by or Zooming in for February conferences. We were glad to see you here at Chugiak and to share about your child’s progress. Our PTO met this past Tuesday here at school and will meet again on the first Tuesday of April. Plan to join them! Plans for spring events were discussed, such as Mercado the week of May 9th and a schoolwide BBQ paired with Field Day on May 18th. Pencil those dates in on your schedule and plan to join us. Though it seems eons away, we know the days pass quickly once we return from Spring Vacation.

Walking Safely

Speaking of spring, as Alaskans, we know that this time of year typically sees icy conditions each morning with some surface thawing by afternoon that refreezes again, leading to slick conditions. Our grounds crews and BPO drop gravel or ice melt daily and yet there are often areas that are slicker than others. As you walk your child to class or coach them as they exit vehicles, please be careful. Remind children to check their footing and to hold on to the bus handle or car door. At school we talk often about “walking like a duck” wherein one lowers their center of gravity a bit or “skating” one’s feet rather than lifting them high, and you do the same, please. We want everyone to make it through breakup season upright!

Masks Optional

As you know, wearing face coverings became optional on Monday, February 28. This policy applies both to our school and to school buses. As Superintendent Bishop wrote recently, “This new phase leans heavily on respecting each other’s decisions. Respect of one another is important as we stay focused on ASD’s mission of “educating all students for success in life.” At Chugiak, we will continue to teach and require respectful conduct toward others, whatever their choice on this topic or others.

After Spring Vacation, students will eat in the cafeteria with their class; a change for a handful of classes from current practice and a continuation for many.

Grab a Good Read!

As students and families head into a week of Spring Vacation, I encourage all students to pick up a good book each day and read. There is no substitute for reading’s impact on the development of literacy skills. Benefits come from students reading on their own, whether silently or aloud as though they are on stage!, and from listening as parents read aloud. Discussing interesting words, inferences and predictions you make as a proficient reader, the story plot or informational content, and other practices that make the experience interactive all enhance students’ language skills and pay dividends to learning. Whether from your bookshelf at home, the Eagle River library, or a book store near you, grab some good reads and settle in during the break. Your kids, and their literacy skills, will benefit!


Heather Mildon

Chugiak ES Principal

2021-22 Calendar at a Glance

Mar. 4: Teacher in-service day, no school for students

Mar. 7 - 11: School closed: Spring Vacation

Mar. 14: Zoom Parent Info-All Things Chugiak (details below)

Mar. 15: MLMS Parent/Student Information Night, 6:30-8 @MLMS

Mar. 16: Tour for prospective families, 9:15am

Mar. 16: Pajama Day - Wacky Wednesday!

Mar. 17: Application deadline for lottery

Mar. 18: ASD Lottery

Mar. 18: AK STAR practice test day, Grades 3 - 5

Mar. 18: STAMP Assessment window for Spanish students closes

Mar. 18-19: PTO Munchy March Fundraiser at Fried Rice Express, either location

Mar. 23: All-Pro Dad Event @ 6:30 pm via Zoom

Mar. 29: PTO Munchy March Fundraiser at Great Alaska Pizza Co.

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Pre-Lottery Zoom Parent Informational Session: March 14, 6pm

On Monday, March 14 at 6:00 p.m., jump onto the Zoom code below if you'd like an overview of our programs and practices at Chugiak Elementary! We will share about our school in general, then proceed to information about the Spanish Immersion program in particular. We will close with some Q & A.

Interested families are invited to follow Monday's Zoom session with a brief building tour on Wednesday, March 16 at 9:15 a.m.

  • Meeting ID: 963 5500 3839

  • Passcode: 2022

  • One tap mobile

  • +12532158782,,96355003839# US (Tacoma)

  • +13462487799,,96355003839# US (Houston)

Spelling Bee Winner and Runner-up

Congratulations to our Chugiak Bee champion, Kaiya Quimby, runner up, Konnor Alborn, and third place speller, Jude Miller.
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Ram Rave Winners

Congratulations to our third group of Bingo winners from the Ram Rave Recognition board. They are:
    • Sophia B.

    • Reed S.

    • Makiah Y.

    • Amy B.

    • Abby B.

    • Haden V.

    • Gabby D.

    • Zooey G.

    • Emery R.

    • Eden H.

These students will join Mrs. Spackman for a bonus music session on Friday, March 18th! We celebrate all Chugiak students who are honoring our Guidelines for Success of being honest, helpful, safe, friendly, and fair, as well as following our core school rules. YOUR daily efforts and choices make our school a great place to learn! Thank you!
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2022 AK STAR and Alaska Science Assessment

Each spring, Alaskan students are provided an opportunity to show what they know. When students show what they know, teachers and parents can partner to promote student success. This year, the State of Alaska Department of Education has partnered with NWEA to align the English language arts and mathematics tests with the MAP Growth benchmark assessments students take in fall, winter and spring. This balanced assessment system will target instruction and better support meeting students’ individual learning needs.

AK STAR (Alaska System of Academic Readiness) and the Alaska Science Assessment are administered to students in Grades 3-9 (English language arts and mathematics) and grades 5, 8 and 10 (science) each spring. The purpose of a large-scale, summative assessment is to provide parents and schools an overall picture of a student’s progress in meeting the Alaska standards at his/her grade level. The assessment is taken on the computer and is not timed, but each content area takes approximately 150-180 minutes. Additionally, an English Learner student who has recently arrived to the country in grades 3-9, will not be taking the ELA portion of AK STAR.

Parents can locate resources for the new AK STAR test and the Alaska Science Assessment, including directions for Practice tests and Tutorials on the ASD website at

Parents can also help by ensuring their children are well rested, eat a nutritious breakfast, and are at school on time for the days of testing. Please avoid scheduling appointments on your child’s testing days.

The ASD AK STAR and Alaska Science Assessment testing window allows for school assessment scheduling flexibility. Students! Get ready to show what you know during Chugiak’s AK STAR and Alaska Science Assessment testing dates between March 28 - April 8! Specific dates and times will be communicated once finalized.

Wacky Wednesday!

Here are some fun and festive pictures from this week’s Wacky Wednesday - Dr. Seuss Day! Way to show your school spirit! Wednesday, March 16’s theme is PJ Day!

March All Pro Dad Virtual Event!

Chugiak Elementary Families (dads and kids):

ALL PRO DAD Zoom meeting:

Wednesday, March 23, 2022, 6:30 pm

Zoom link:

Meeting ID: 940 9180 3130
Passcode: 2022

Please join us for an hour of fun relationship-building for dads and kids(K-5th)! See you there!

For questions: