Military News

Monday, September 22, 2014

JBER School Partnership Program members have high hopes for 2014

by Senior Airman Omari Bernard
JBER Public Affairs

9/22/2014 - JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- On a rainy Wednesday in Anchorage, service members and educators met at King Career Center. Though they walk different career paths, they have something in common - the development of today's workforce and tomorrow's leaders in the Anchorage School District.

Partners from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson and the Anchorage School District came together to plan and coordinate efforts for the 2014 school year during the School Partnership Program Kick Off event.

Ed Graff, ASD superintendent, started off the event by congratulating everyone on the previous year and welcoming new faces as he looked around the room.
"As many of you know, the partners that we have in Anchorage are critical to our success," Graff said.

An example of this is a partnership between the 673d Civil Engineer Group and Central Middle School of Science. Airmen chaperone students, coach youth activities and teach students about their careers. Central Middle School and the 673d CEG are winners of the of 2014 Spirit of Tomorrow Business Award.

As part of the ASD's School Business Partnership program the SPP is one of many partnerships with the ASD.

"In the School Business Partnership Program we have more than 600 partners in existence and are thriving," Graff said. "What's nice about these partnerships is that we don't just receive the benefits from these partnerships - [we] are able to give back."

As the ASD superintendent, he explained he has the pleasure of having a partnership with JBER leaders such as Air Force Col. Brian Bruckbauer, JBER and 673d Air Base Wing commander, and Army Col. Thomas Roth, U.S. Army Alaska chief of staff.

"The partnerships between JBER and the ASD have been in existence for five years," Graff said. "There are 28 different partnerships currently at 24 schools with different units and support staff."

Bruckbauer and Roth both said they support the message of the ASD superintendent.

"We treasure the relationship that the installation has with the school district," Bruckbauer said. "Not only do we do our mission on JBER each and every day but all of our people live and work in the community."

Roth has had five had children attend schools in the ASD.

"I have been here for a few years," Roth said. "Thanks for what you do. We are thrilled to be partners with raising our children."

As someone new to the Anchorage community, Bruckbauer said he was impressed by the support of the local community.

"It makes living here a wonderful experience," said the JBER commander. "The community relationship we have is very strong in Anchorage."

The program is meant to develop strategies for how the JBER and education communities can work together to build stronger workforce relationships. T
ogether, partners in the program discuss the specific needs and demands for a quality education and a well-trained workforce in the 21st century.

"We want to make this program as successful as possible," Bruckbauer said. "We look forward to a wonderful year and a wonderful partnership."

For more information, or to take in the program, call 384-1505.

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