Bruce jaffa waits in line to speak to Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly against closing Moose Pass School, on Tuesday, April 2, 2019 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Bruce jaffa waits in line to speak to Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly against closing Moose Pass School, on Tuesday, April 2, 2019 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Assembly to discuss Moose Pass School’s future

If Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s proposed budget passes, it could result in the closure of six schools.

A resolution supporting the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District’s efforts to keep Moose Pass School operating in its current location will be heard at Tuesday’s Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting.

The district has said if Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s proposed budget passes, it could result in the closure of six schools — in Moose Pass, Seward, Nikiski, Homer, Soldotna and Anchor Point.

Should Moose Pass School close, the roughly 16 students at the K-7th-grade school would be sent to schools in Seward, about 30 miles away.

The Moose Pass School is housed in a historic building, built in 1930 as the Moose Pass Territorial School. The school is also located within the Kenai Mountains-Turnagain Arm National Heritage Area Corridor, which is a congressionally designated historic area program.

In a letter to the assembly from Jessica Szelag, the executive director of the National Heritage Area, Szelag requests the assembly to maintain funding for Moose Pass School, ensuring the school continues to operate as a place of learning into the future.

“To not do so would negatively alter the educational, economic and cultural fabric of the community,” Szelag said in the letter.

Szelag also wrote that the school has been serving the community’s children for the last 89 years and is the oldest continually used school building in the entire district.

Former Gov. Sean Parnell also recognized Moose Pass School’s historic significance. In 2010, Parnell, through executive proclamation, named May 20, 2010, as Moose Pass Territorial School Day, according to the resolution.

The resolution, introduced by Assembly Member Kenn Carpenter, will be heard at Tuesday’s assembly meeting.

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