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Anne Hillman, KSKA - Anchorage

ahillman (at) alaskapublic (dot) org  |  About Anne

Lilly shops with Officer Bonnie Charles for Christmas presents for herself and her family. Hillman/KSKA

Shop with a Cop highlights family homelessness in Anchorage

For the past 15 years, the Anchorage police and firefighters have donated money to the Shop with a Cop program. It gives disadvantaged children the chance to buy gifts for themselves and their family members for Christmas. But it also highlights a problem in Anchorage – families experiencing homelessness.

December 21, 2014
Do I Need to Rinse This?: The economics of recycling

Do I Need to Rinse This?: The economics of recycling

The rules about what you can and can’t put into a recycle bin can be confusing, but they have a reason. Here’s a quick primer on the basics of recycling.

December 21, 2014

Anchorage School Board puts money into savings, Rilke Schule facility

ASD will put $17 million aside for next year’s budget, $2 million to help Rilke Schule construct a building, and $4 million to help with classroom crowding during the second semester.

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December 16, 2014
Akeela's celebration cake for their 40th anniversary. Hillman/KSKA

Akeela House celebrates 40 years of successful sobriety treatments

The Akeela House in Anchorage turned 40 this year. It’s one of Anchorage’s oldest substance use treatment facilities. Now it has programs in communities and prisons across the state. Former clients say it still delivers a message of hope.

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December 12, 2014
ASD Charter Schools Need Facilities; School Board Considering Proposal

ASD Charter Schools Need Facilities; School Board Considering Proposal

Charter schools in Anchorage are struggling with a facilities problem. The schools are part of the Anchorage School District, but they have to find and pay for their own buildings. And it’s really hard to find empty schools or pay to build new ones. Now the Anchorage School Board is discussing a potential solution.

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December 11, 2014
A screenshot of  the Angry Birds tutorial from an Hour of Code.

Elementary students learn an Hour of Code

Susitna Elementary students joined over 52 million others around the world to learn about computer programming through the Hour of Code.

December 8, 2014

NAACP to host peaceful rally remembering Mike Brown, Eric Garner

The Anchorage NAACP is hosting a peaceful rally on Saturday in memory of two unarmed African-American men who were killed by police in the lower 48 over the summer. NAACP President Wanda Laws says Alaskans need to be part of the national dialogue about race relations and police actions.

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December 5, 2014
(Photo by Anne Hillman, KSKA - Anchorage)

AK: Drumline

Imagine you’re in middle school. You don’t love math or history or any other subject. But there’s this thing you look forward to everyday after school. It’s called drumline. And a teacher at Clark Middle School thinks it can help kids learn about music and teach them some other skills too.

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December 5, 2014
Traditional gut sewing at the Anchorage Museum

Traditional gut sewing at the Anchorage Museum

The Anchorage Museum is hosting three Alaska Native artists this week. They are teaching students and others about gut sewing, a traditional skill still used today to make rain gear. They’re also learning about the craft from each other and from historical items in the museum’s collection. Mary Tunuchuk talks about the process.

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December 3, 2014

ASD seeking solutions to staff morale, hiring and retention problems

Financial uncertainty at the Anchorage School District is leading to morale problems and an inability to attract qualified teachers. The School Board is looking for solutions.

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December 2, 2014

Anchorage charter schools seeking facilities, school board discussing solutions

The Anchorage School District is considering ways to help charter schools find permanent facilities. ASD has six facility-based charter schools and one more that’s petitioning for creation. Most of them are have difficulty finding and paying for adequate building space, especially the German immersion program, Rilke Schule, and the proposed math, science, and arts middle school.

December 1, 2014
Alaskan Writers Push to Finish a Novel in a Month

Alaskan Writers Push to Finish a Novel in a Month

Nearly 500 Alaskans are trying to write a novel this month. An entire novel. They’re participating in November National Novel Writing Month, a worldwide movement aimed at getting people writing. Some of the writers gathered at Anchorage’s Loussac Public Library.

November 28, 2014
People gathered in downtown Anchorage to show their solidarity with the community of Ferguson, Missouri.

Anchorage Residents Demonstrate in Solidarity with Ferguson, MO

About 25 people stood on the corner of C and 7th in downtown Anchorage holding signs reading “Black lives matter” and “His name was Michael Brown.” They gathered to stand in solidarity with the people of Ferguson, Missouri. The white police officer who shot an unarmed black teenager in August was acquitted earlier this week.

November 26, 2014
Design Challenge encourages innovative solutions for Cabin Fever

Design Challenge encourages innovative solutions for Cabin Fever

As the state is cloaked in darkness and cold, cabin fever starts to set in. But some Alaskans think they can fight winter’s scourge by reinventing the spaces we inhabit. The Alaska Design Forum is hosting a challenge to get community members and designers to reconsider the cabin of the future.

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November 26, 2014
“Frost” Brings Art Seekers into Anchorage Parks

“Frost” Brings Art Seekers into Anchorage Parks

Frost is one of Anchorage’s newest public art projects. It’s a scavenger hunt with photo clues that lead you to a place where the artists have mixed lights and film into a temporary art piece. We went on a quest to find the newest installation.

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November 24, 2014

ASD budget surplus indicator of unfilled positions

The Anchorage School District spent less money than they planned during the first quarter of this year. If that trend continues, they’ll have an extra $22 million left over by the end of June 2015. Much of the savings come from the district’s difficulty in hiring and retaining highly-experienced teachers and staff. ASD is spending less than planned on salaries and benefits.

November 20, 2014

Community gives input on Anchorage plan to end homelessness

The municipality is developing a new community plan to end homelessness in Anchorage. During a listening session held Wednesday evening, about 20 people gathered to discuss possible solutions to the decades old problem, including involving more local government and making services more efficient.

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November 19, 2014
Benita Lozano shows off her new heater. Hillman/KSKA

Weatherization program brings energy savings and safety

The state’s weatherization program began in 1978, during the energy crisis, and continues to help families deal with ever-rising energy costs. Weatherizing means making heating systems more efficient and plugging up the holes in a home to keep the heat inside. But it’s not just about economics, it’s about safety.

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November 19, 2014
Students call for action, public comment on U-Med Access Road

Students call for action, public comment on U-Med Access Road

Students at the University of Alaska – Anchorage are trying to motivate their classmates and the community to get informed about a controversial proposed infrastructure project — the U-Med District Northern Access Road. They say the public still has a chance to shape the project’s future because it’s not a done deal.

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November 14, 2014

ENSTAR rates to hold nearly steady for 7 months, prices similar to last winter

Enstar gas prices won’t change much for the next 7 months. Rates will hold steady at just under 78 cents per hundred cubic feet starting in January. That’s 5 and half cents over current rates and about the same as last winter. For an average household on an average month, that’s a $6.70 increase.

November 13, 2014