Copper River Current

Tamara Van Wyhe, Superintendent

The CRSD: Proudly Serving the Copper River Basin!

Over the course of the 2018-2019 school year, the CRSD “Current” column will showcase each of our four schools, as well as the staff members who make learning happen for students each day. This week, let’s take a look at the basics about the district as a whole. Regardless of if you’re new to the area or have been around for decades, you might learn something new about our amazing rural district.

Glennallen School is the largest school in the district in terms of facility size, student enrollment, and number of faculty and staff members. The building itself houses both the elementary school and the junior/senior high school (considered separate schools in terms of state funding), but the school is divided into a K-5 area (housed in the elementary wing), a middle school (Grades 6-8) located on the main level of the JH/HS wing, and high school grades with classrooms on the second floor of the building. Current enrollment at Glennallen School is 256 students,  with 111 students in K-5, 62 students in middle school, and 83 students in high school. Led by Principal Frances Jackson and Dean of Students Jason Williams, the campus has 20 teachers and 20 classified employees (including office staff, para-professionals, food service personnel, and custodians). Glennallen Schools serves students from a number of communities from as far west as Nelchina, as far north as Chistochina, and just beyond Copper Center to the south.

Kenny Lake School serves families in the southern part of the district, including students from Strelna and Chitina, and from south of Copper Center to south of Squirrel Creek. With 65 students total, the K-12 school is home to 27 students in Grades K-5, 17 students in Grades 6-8, and 21 high school students to the building each day. The combination-grade classrooms are divided by Grades K-2, 3-5, and 6-8. High school students are served by two on-site high school teachers, with additional programming available via video-teleconference (VTC) delivery. Assistant Superintendent Shaun Streyle serves as Principal of Kenny Lake School, and Lead Teacher Shawna Goodwin manages day-to-day student and staff activities. With six teachers and five classified staff members (including a school secretary, three para-professionals, and one custodian), Kenny Lake School is a small school in terms of numbers, but is certainly active in terms of community involvement and support.

Slana School is our smallest brick-and-mortar school in the CRSD. Serving students in the northern part of the district, Slana has 13 students in Grades K-12 (with three students in Grades K-5, seven students in middle school, and three high school students). Dr. Kathy Everett, Director of Programs and Interventions, also serves as Principal of Slana School. The school has three full-time, on-site employees, including one certified teacher, one para-professional, and one multi-role employee who handles secretarial duties, custodial work, and acts as a para-professional, as well. High school classes for students at Slana are delivered via VTC from teachers at Kenny Lake and Glennallen, and all three of this year’s high schoolers travel to Glennallen to participate in hands-on Trek classes including aviation, robotics, theater, and construction trades.

Upstream Learning is the CRSD’s home education program and serves 115 students. As a statewide program, Upstream Learning currently has enrollees from our local attendance areas, as well as students living in communities across Alaska and as far away as Korea (active military family). Upstream has the most teachers of any of the CRSD’s schools, as a parent or guardian serves as the primary instructor for each of the students. Families are supported by a program coordinator, Kim Roeske, who assists parents in selecting curriculum and structuring students’ learning plans. Mary Hernandez serves as the program assistant, and Assistant Superintendent Shaun Streyle serves as Principal. Currently enrolled are 78 students in Grades K-5, 23 students in Grades 6-8, and 14 students in Grades 9-12. Some CRSD students are dual-enrolled through Upstream and one of the brick-and-mortar schools. The program is housed in the District Office building (just across the parking lot from Glennallen School) and includes offices, a library, and classrooms used for music and art lessons, specialty programming, and parent luncheons.  

The district as a whole is supported by a district-wide staff of 12, including a K-12 Counselor, Business Office staff of two, Technology Director, Maintenance Department staff of two, Programs and Interventions staff of three, Board Secretary, Assistant Superintendent, and Superintendent.

Our little district serves a huge geographic area, and we are very proud of the opportunities we are able to provide students at each of our traditional schools and through our home education program. Want to learn more about the CRSD? Check out the district website at, follow us on Facebook at CRSDak, or (better yet) learn about our schools first-hand by joining us for one of the many events and activities happening across the district on a regular basis!