• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
1m 37s

Budget takes priority at school board candidate forum

By Alexis Fernandez 7:40 AM March 19, 2014

Anchorage School Board candidates appear at Alaska Children's Trust forum

ANCHORAGE – Five candidates, with five different reasons why they would be the best person to serve on the Anchorage School Board, shared their vision for the future of Anchorage’s youth at a candidate forum Tuesday evening.

School Board Seat C was the first race featured.

Liz Ross, 34, and Dean Williams, 55, think they can do a better job at handling the budget and bringing in more programs than incumbent Pat Higgins, 61, who’s seeking a third term.

“I think we need to advance and kind of change the way we think about education and be more innovative and I think we’ll have better outcomes for our students,” Ross said.

“I think what’s going on now in terms of the budget could have been avoided several years ago,” Williams said.

Higgins said during his six years on the school board, he’s made significant changes.

“We’ve have a lot of changes during that time, we’ve gone from 63 percent graduation rate … to about 79.6 I believe, we’ve had dropouts reduce 30 percent,” he said.

The next race highlighted at Tuesday’s forum was for School Board Seat D.

Kameron Perez-Verdia, 42, was appointed to the seat in April after former board member Gretchen Guess resigned.

“I’m someone who’s passionate about education, it’s what I do for a living, it’s what I talk about all the time,” he said. “I’ve worked for 20 years to improve education in Alaska.”

His challenger, 74-year-old Don Smith, is a former Anchorage School Board member who lost last year to former state Sen. Bettye Davis.

He said he’s focused on fixing the budget.

“We’re in trouble financially, and we don’t have this coming school year — the budget is going to be $23 million less than it was the current year, “ he said.

Although their visions are different, they all agree the focus should be on helping students succeed.

Tuesday’s forum was hosted by the Alaska Children’s Trust. The Anchorage municipal election is scheduled for April 1.

Latest Stories

  • News

    March for Science draws large crowd in downtown Anchorage

    by Eric Ruble on Apr 22, 17:33

    About 1,500 Alaskans gathered in downtown Anchorage Saturday morning to stand in solidarity with science. The March for Science is part of a national movement to increase the visibility of the scientific community and voice concerns about President Donald Trump’s policies regarding issues like climate change and healthcare. Bryan Box, a lead organizer for the Anchorage […]

  • Politics

    Trump says he’ll mark 100 days with Pennsylvania rally

    by Associated Press on Apr 22, 16:22

    President Donald Trump says he’ll mark his 100th day in office with a “BIG” rally in Pennsylvania. Trump hits 100 days on April 29 – next Saturday. He tweeted about the rally this Saturday, saying that next week “I will be holding a BIG rally in Pennsylvania. Look forward to it!” Next Saturday night I […]

  • News

    VIDEO: American Airlines flight attendant grounded after altercation caught on camera

    by Associated Press on Apr 22, 16:01

    The Latest on the confrontation on an American Airlines flight (all times local): 6 p.m. A passenger on an American Airlines flight says a flight attendant who has since been grounded nearly hit a baby when he jerked a stroller away from a woman holding the child. Olivia Morgan, an executive with an education-related nonprofit, […]

  • Lifestyle

    Photos: Alaskans march for science on Earth Day

    by KTVA Web Staff on Apr 22, 15:45

    Over 1,000 participants cheered and waved signs under clear, blue skies Saturday at the March for Science in Downtown Anchorage. The march was part of the larger worldwide event organized on Earth Day to recognize and bring awareness to scientific, fact-based decision making, which many feel has been under threat since the election of President Donald Trump. […]

  • News

    Ketchikan seafood processors to see water rate hikes

    by Associated Press on Apr 22, 13:14

    Officials in Ketchikan have approved an ordinance that more than doubles water rates for the southeast Alaska city’s seafood processors over the next three years. The Ketchikan Daily News reports the City Council approved the ordinance Thursday. Water rates will increase by 35 percent each year over the next three years for Ketchikan’s three fish processors […]

  • News

    New fees instituted at Interior Alaska recreation sites

    by Associated Press on Apr 22, 13:00

    The state will start charging fees for the popular Chena River State Recreation Area and other recreational sites in Interior Alaska next month. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that visitors to the 12 sites within the Chena recreation area will have to pay a $5 entrance fee starting in May. The daily fees will also go […]

  • On-Air

    Inside the Gates: JROTC cadets train on JBER

    by Bonney Bowman on Apr 22, 12:41

    Many high school students join the Army Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) program as a way to decide if they want to later enlist in the military. But for some, it’s a way to build confidence before heading to college and the workplace. JROTC cadets from East High School spent the day on Joint Base […]

  • News

    Hillside residents make preparations as wildfire season begins in Southcentral Alaska

    by Eric Ruble on Apr 22, 12:22

    Wildfire season has begun in Southcentral Alaska. People who live on the south end of Anchorage’s Hillside neighborhood got a scare Thursday night when police shut down the Seward Highway so firefighters could work on a fire near mile 105. It took 10 firefighters to get the two-acre fire under control. Michelle Corburn, who lives […]