BACK TO BASICS: Local students begin another school year

Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - 13:09
  • Dawn McElhinney stops traffic for students, parents and teachers returning to Eagle River Elementary School for the first day of classes on Aug. 21, 2017. More than 5,000 Chugiak-Eagle River students attend a dozen schools throughout the community. (Star photo by Kirsten Swann)
  • Dawn McElhinney stops traffic for students, parents and teachers returning to Eagle River Elementary School for the first day of classes on Aug. 21, 2017. More than 5,000 Chugiak-Eagle River students attend a dozen schools throughout the community. (Star photo by Kirsten Swann)
  • Eagle River Elementary School crossing guard Dawn McElhinney waves at a passing school bus while waiting to escort students across the street on the first day of classes on Aug. 21, 2017. More than 5,000 Chugiak-Eagle River students attend a dozen schools throughout the community. (Star photo by Kirsten Swann)

For thousands of Chugiak-Eagle River families, the last full week of August marks a shift to school schedules filled with classes, sports and social events.

Public school students in grades 1-12 began classes Aug. 21. Kindergarten students are set to return to their classrooms Aug. 28. Weekends are packed with games and meets, and school calendars brim with important dates and deadlines. Here are a few key facts, phone numbers and other information to help you navigate the back-to-school rush at Chugiak-Eagle River’s 12 public schools:

• At Eagle River High School, Homecoming and Spirit Week is set to take place Aug. 28 – Sept. 2. Events include school pictures, a pep rally and themed outfit days – get ready to dress like a hipster or wear neon – and it all culminates with a Saturday homecoming dance and football game v. Kenai. The Homecoming Barbecue is scheduled to kick off at 11:30 a.m. Sept. 2, with other festivities following throughout the day.

• Chugiak High School celebrates Homecoming Week Sept. 11-16, with football games on Friday, Sept. 15 and a Homecoming Dance scheduled to take place Saturday night, according to CHS.

• The first holiday of the new school year comes on Monday, Sept. 4, when Anchorage School District schools and offices are closed in observance of Labor Day.

• High school juniors and seniors interested in applying for a gifted mentorship – a period of independent study with an expert in their field of interest – can submit their applications through Sept. 8 at 3 p.m., according to ASD. Interested students are required to meet multiple program requirements, including grade standards and an interview. More information about the mentorships is available through the Gifted Mentorships coordinator at 907-742-3841.

Need to reach your school’s administrative or attendance office? Try these numbers:

Alpenglow Elementary School: 907-742-3300

Birchwood ABC Elementary School: 907-742-3450

Chugiak Elementary School: 907-742-3400

Eagle Academy Charter School: 907-742-3025

Eagle River Elementary School: 907-742-3000

Fire Lake Elementary School: 907-742-3350

Homestead Elementary School: 907-742-3552

Ravenwood Elementary School: 907-742-3256

Gruening Middle School: 907-742-3608

Mirror Lake Middle School: 907-742-7973

Chugiak High School: 907-742-3069

Eagle River High School: 907-742-2720

The first quarter of the Anchorage School District school year ends Friday, Oct. 20 with a district-wide in-service day and no school for students. Parent conferences are scheduled to take place the next week, on Oct. 25-26, according to ASD.

Looking for more information not listed here? The Anchorage School District maintains comprehensive event calendars and phone directories online at ASDK12.org.

Besides a dozen public schools, Chugiak-Eagle River is also home to two private Christian schools: Eagle River Christian School began its school year Aug. 21, and Birchwood Christian School students returned to class Aug. 22.

Reach Eagle River Christian School at (907) 694-4602, and Birchwood Christian School at 907-688-2228. You can find ERCS online at eagleriverchristianschool.org, while BCS can be found online at birchwoodchristianschool.org. Both schools are also on Facebook.

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