School Board Discusses AMCC Program On the Table for Nome Schools

The Nome School Board was back in session Tuesday night, unanimously passing four action items concerning teacher housing, school debt, and sex education.

To kick off the meeting, the Board approved last month’s disbursements and this month’s travel costs were approved. Afterwards, multiple students and staff were recognized for their achievement. Wyatt Ahmasuk, Virgil Walker, and Cash Arrington won students of the month. Nancy Bahnke and Julie Fabignon-Cross won teachers of the month. Support staff of the month went to Elena Spivey and Jade Murdock.

In her superintendent’s report, Jamie Burgess says that, with board member Sandy Martinson’s help, she is looking for ways to support at-risk youth in the community following the Nome Youth Facility’s closure. According to Burgess, a partnership with Anvil Mountain Correctional Center might be on the table.

“Anvil Mountain Correctional Center has approached me about the possibility of looking at a program at the AMCC jail to provide educational services for students that have not received a GED and/or graduated but are incarcerated there.”

– Jamie Burgess

Following Burgess, Nome Beltz High School Principal Jay Thomas gave his report during Tuesday night’s meeting and discussed the procedures for training for active shooter scenarios.

“The meaning when we say it’s active shooter training – the interesting thing about it is it wasn’t about active shooter training – it was about prevention. It was 85% about prevention and the last part is what if it really happens.”

– Jay Thomas

Principal Thomas also noted that attendance has been higher so far in 2019 than expected.

“What we looked at was how many kids are missing each day and our attendance at Nome-Beltz is up about forty students this year.”

– Jay Thomas

Nome’s School Board then unanimously passed four action items.

One was to approve talks with the city of Nome for more teacher housing in city limits. Superintendent Burgess says that as part of the partnership with the city, a few of the units will be also available for Nome Police Department employees. In addition, the board moved to discuss debt financing with the City of Nome for the proposed Teacher Housing Project

The board then approved the FY ’21 budget timeline, with this one slated to include three drafts of the budget instead of four from the previous year.

Lastly, after some discussion, the board approved sex education for fourth through sixth grade students, with details to follow at a later date.

The board will hold a community forum on a proposal to change the two Nome-Beltz schools for next school year to a middle school and high school, as opposed to a junior high and high school. The forum will be at Nome-Beltz on Wednesday, November 20th at 7:00pm at the NES commons. 

They especially encourage parents of current 4th and 5th grade students at Nome Elementary to attend, since they will be most proximately affected by the potential change. The board will have its next work session on the 26th.

Photo at top: Nome School Board, meets on Tuesday, November 12th 2019 (Board member Darlene Trigg not pictured). Photo: KNOM