New principal and teacher steps into midyear vacancy at Ekwok’s school

Jan 9, 2018

Monica Turrentine became principal and teacher at Ekwok “Sonny Nelson” School in December. Substitutes had been covering the position since November because the previous principal and teacher resigned.

Monica Turrentine has worked in education in Alaska for nine years, mostly in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. She is now the teacher and principal at Ekwok "Sonny Nelson" School.
Credit courtesy of Monica Turrentine

Ekwok “Sonny Nelson” School has a new principal and teacher. Monica Turrentine stepped into the role at the beginning of December, two weeks before the winter break began. The previous principal and only certified teacher resigned and moved out of state in November due to an unforeseen family situation. For about a month, substitutes took on the teaching and administration responsibilities at the school.

Turrentine said the transition has been smooth so far. Although she is the only ceritifed teacher, she said she is well supported by the other school staff. Further, she spoke positively of the groundwork that the former principal, Amy Arnold, laid.

“The kids, their behavior is really good. They’re really cooperative. They’re used to working independently, and I could tell that Amy set it up really well. I just had to figure out the curriculum, where they were at and the routine,” said Turrentine.

Originally from California, Turrentine came to Ekwok with nine years of education experience in Alaska, mostly in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.

Ekwok “Sonny Nelson” school has 15 students, ranging from kindergarten to seventh grade.

Contact the author at or 907-842-5281.

Ekwok "Sonny Nelson" School
Credit KDLG/ Avery Lill