The Scoop

Chugach Optional Newsletter - January 2023 Edition

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Message from Joel

Happy New Year, Chugach Families!

We have successfully made it halfway through the school year and even managed to end it with a bang with back-to-back snow storms and a chilly last week of school. As we start back to school, we look forward to the increasing daylight and to the many fun events that our school does in the second half of the year, starting with our Winter Carnival on the 27th. Please make sure to mark that date on your calendar and come join us for this wonderful evening.

As we know, there is still a lot of winter left, and there have been times in January through March when we can get some cold temperatures as well as snow, wind, and ice storms. Please make sure your children come prepared for the weather, as we do not cancel outdoor recess unless the temperatures reach -10° or colder. Chugach Optional has also developed a remote learning plan in case we have additional school closures due to weather. Your teachers will be sharing with families this week how you can access meaningful learning opportunities should school be closed.

Have a great month everyone, and I look forward to seeing you around the building!


January's Important Dates

Monday, January 9 - 5/6 BOB (11:40am)

Wednesday, January 11 - 5/6 BOB In-School Battle (1:15pm), 3/4 BOB (2:50pm)

Friday, January 13 - Hibernation Day (Kindy), EARLY RELEASE DAY (Dismissal@11:15am),

Monday, January 16 - Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday (NO SCHOOL)

Wednesday, January 18 - 3/4 BOB (11:40am), Community Assembly Meeting (5:30pm in Library)

Monday, January 23 - 5/6 BOB (11:40am)

Wednesday, January 25 - 3/4 BOB (2:50pm)

Friday, January 27 - EARLY RELEASE DAY (Dismissal@11:15am), 3/4 BOB In-school Battle (12:15pm), WINTER CARNIVAL (5:30pm)

Monday, January 30 - 5/6 BOB (11:40am)

Tuesday, January 31 - Alaska Music & Dance Presentation (2pm in Gym)

Special Thanks

A special thanks goes out to the whole Chugach Optional Community for your patience, flexibility and understanding as we navigated the parking issues caused by Snowmageddon 2022. We would especially like to thank Kurt Marsch for plowing 12th Ave. on several occasions to increase access to the back door of the school.

Winter Carnival 2023

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To purchase tickets for Winter Carnival, please click TICKETS!

If you are interested in volunteering at Winter Carnival, please click VOLUNTEER!

Lost & Found!

Our Lost & Found tables in the entrance hall have piled up with items left here over the winter break!! We will be leaving the tables set up through Friday, January 13th and then any remaining items will be donated to GoodWill. Please stop by and check out our collection of snow pants, boots, hoodies, jackets, mitts, gloves, hat and lunchboxes that have lost their way. Please claim any of your items by dismissal on Friday, January 13th.


Thursday, Feb 9th - 8:10-2:30

Mini-course time is here! Here’s your chance to provide enriching experiences and community-building opportunities to Chugach students, AND to have a lot of fun getting to know our students better.

Think “Bring Your Child to Work Day” in reverse! We are inviting you to share something you know, love, or want to learn more about with our Chugach students.

Mini-courses are all day on February 9th. Here are some ways to participate:

  • Lead a course. We need 26 full days of classes to have the right parent/ child ratio. That means we need LOTS of courses, both half and full-day. We’re laying out courses right now, so we can have a great slate of courses for the kids to pick from. Find us at the mini-course table after school if you have questions or click HERE to complete the form.
  • Assist in a course. Each course needs at least one parent helper. Find a friend who’s leading a course and join him/her or ask one of the mini-course team (see below) and we can help you find a course to assist. We’ll be figuring out assistants for classes by mid January.
  • Help the kids sign up for a mini-course. The last week of January, the kids will sign up for mini-courses with their class. This will mostly happen on the computer, and parent helpers are needed to assist, especially for the younger kids.
  • Chaperone or drive for a field trip. There will be many field trips who need drivers. If you’d like to drive for your child’s choice, keep a look out for the field trip forms the first week of February. While most field trips will welcome parents staying for the entire day, you can also just help with driving if need be.
  • Get excited about the day with your child. Kids will be talking about mini-courses because of the bulletin board of ideas in the hallway. This bulletin board will become more and more specific as the day approaches. It’s always fun learning about the kids’ interests and what they might sign up for.

@ Our Library

Happy 2023!

Like it or not, we live in a digital world. When I went to elementary school, there were no computers. (Wow! I just aged myself and sounded like my parents!) Now we carry devices in our pockets that have the capability of launching the space shuttle if programmed correctly. Technology is an amazing tool and one that needs to be taught. Digital citizenship and tech tools are taught during library classes, especially with Middle and Upper family groups. ASD supports Common Sense Education’s Digital Citizenship Curriculum. If you have any questions, please connect with me - visit me in the library, send me a Remind message or email.

Common Sense Media has a free tool for families to support their children and the use of technology. Common Sense Media Tips by Text! Though my child is 14, I am going to sign up and see what new things I can learn!

Many thanks!


SAVE THE DATE: ART NIGHT - Friday, March 3, 2023

A fundraiser for our sister school, Mauni Primary School in Malawi, Africa.

Friday, March 3, 2023

6:00- 8 p.m.

Make Art, Buy Art, Enjoy Art

Art Night is a schoolwide event in support of Mauni Primary School in Malawi. Chugach Optional students, families, school groups, classrooms, and community members donate art or crafts. The donated artwork is sold during Art Night at a fixed price or by silent auction. Past art pieces have included paintings, jewelry, wall art, pottery, quilts, knitted garments, stained glass, garden art, and furniture. Some of the artwork is created by established artists, other artwork is created by amateurs, students, or determined rookies. All funds raised go directly to Mauni Primary school in Malawi, Africa.

Please consider donating art for this event!

Friendly Reminders

Parking Etiquette
  • Please refrain from parking in any of the "RESERVED" parking spots, the fire lane or the loading dock area. We know parking is tight and the weather is cold, but for safety and courtesy reasons these areas/spots must be respected.

Outer wear

  • All students need to have proper winter gear when going outside for recess.
  • For Kinder, Primary and Middle, this means boots, snow pants, jackets, hats, and gloves.
  • For Uppers, they must have boots, jackets, hats, and gloves (although snow pants are recommended as well).
  • Students who don’t have the proper gear with them and can’t find something that fits from Nurse Maya will be spending their recess sitting on the benches by the front office.

Please encourage your student(s) to be prepared.


  • If your child is going to be out of school for the day please contact the office before 9:30 am at 907-742-3730
  • All students arriving after 8:15 am must sign-in at the office
  • More details on Attendance can be found here

Parent/Visitor Sign-in

  • All parents, visitors, and volunteers who are going to be in the school after 8:30 am need to sign in at the office.


  • We are still in need of several Noon Duty attendants at the school. Please go to the ASD website to apply if interested in these positions.

About Us

The Chugach Optional Office is open from 7:30am - 4:00pm every school day. We can be reached at 907-742-3730 or by email at