Our primary goal is to help teachers and site administrators provide the best educational program possible for LKSD students in both Yup'ik and English. In order to meet this challenge, our responsibilities include all curriculum development and implementation, all state and district assessment, Yup'ik language and culture programs, staff development, and instructional support through grants, training and on-site services.
The Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta is home to over 15,000 Yupiit (Eskimos). The indigenous Yup'ik language is spoken in at least 18 communities in Lower Kuskokwim School District (LKSD). The majority of young children entering school in these villages speak Yup'ik. Cup'ig is spoken by elders in the village of Mekoryuk. In LKSD, Yup'ik/Cup'ig language and culture are critical components of the district's curriculum and instructional program for two significant reasons:
1. First language instruction and support in core curricular areas allow students to develop and "keep up" academically while learning English, a research based and United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) approved approach to English Language Development.
2. The Yup'ik language is valued as an important world language. The LKSD program supports students in meeting this state content standard, and supports communities in maintaining and strengthening their Native language for future generations.