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NEA-Alaska President Barb Angaiak Statement on House Bill 5 and House Bill 112

NEA-Alaska president Barb Angaiak released the following statement regarding Alaska State Legislature House Bill 5 and 112:

“NEA-Alaska is disappointed in the introduction of both House Bill 5 and House Bill 112 in the Alaska State Legislature.  This is yet another attempt by the legislature to narrow curriculum provided in Alaska’s public schools. It is unnecessary and is a clear intrusion on local school district board decisions regarding curriculum.

We see many problems with what is proposed in this legislation. It is unclear whose interpretation of the language of the constitution will be utilized as correct. Additionally, students in Alaska already take courses in U.S. Government, U.S. History and Alaska History, which encompass the topics these bills attempt to prescribe. Would “American Constitutionalism” trump Alaska History for thousands of students in rural Alaska?  Lastly, both bills provide for additional testing of students who are already saturated with benchmarks and standards. This additional testing further removes teachers’ ability to spend time in the classroom teaching.

NEA-Alaska maintains its commitment to work with the legislature to achieve educational accountability and excellence. We continue to provide our policy makers with an understanding of the true needs in Alaska’s public schools.”

NEA-Alaska is a diverse organization of teachers, certificated staff, education support professionals (ESPs), retired members, and students training to become teachers.  With almost 13,000 members, NEA-Alaska is a democratic, grass roots organization that promotes high standards of excellence in education for the children of Alaska through support of public school employees. Approximately 67 local associations in school districts across the state are affiliated with NEA-Alaska, which is the state affiliate of the 3.2 million members of the  National Education Association, headquartered in Washington, D.C. For more information on NEA-Alaska visit www.neaalaska.org.

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