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2007 – Every school district in the state was required to adopt a policy prohibiting the harassment, intimidation or bullying of any student, by July 2007. Each school district was also required to share the policy with parents, students, volunteers and school employees. Bullying, intimidation and harassment was defined as an intentional written, oral or physical act, and cyberbullying was not explicitly included.
2009 – The Alaska Education Plan of March 2009 included Internet safety and bullying among issues to address through health and wellness programs. The plan also called for the development of technology skills in the classroom, encouraging the use of technology to pursue students’ interests and solve problems, teach the ethical use of technology and utilize the Internet for research. Students were to use technology to actively expand and personalize their own education, while teachers were to be trained to use technology to support instruction.
2013 – The Governor proposed a $5 million digital teaching initiative as part of his 2015 fiscal year budget. The initiative included expanding distance learning programs in several districts, serving as a statewide pilot for digital education over the course of three years.
2014 – An Alaskan school district was awarded the Digital Teaching Initiative Grant to create the Alaska Digital Academy. The Academy provides interactive, online courses for middle and high school students on a wide range of subjects, which are taught by teachers proficient in distance technology. The goal of the Academy is to increase students’ educational opportunities.
2016 – The state board of education set a goal to modernize Alaska’s educational system. This includes using technology effectively in the classroom and moving away from a one-size-fits all approach to education.
2017 - The Alaska Department of Education and Early Development (DEED) released a public survey asking Alaskans to share their priorities for public education reform. This project was called the Alaska Education Challenge, and almost 1,400 Alaskans submitted over 18,000 ideas to be considered. After submission, DEED gathered nearly 100 Alaskans from across the state to develop three recommendations for each of the five strategic priorities set by the State Board. The subsequent 13 recommendations were reviewed and accepted by Governor Bill Walker, and the final report was submitted to the Alaska legislature in the following year.
Also in 2017, Alaska’s Wrangell Public Schools rolled out an app to address bullying. The app, called Anonymous Alerts, enabled students to report incidents of bullying. The app was designed to give students an extra layer of protection when compared to in-person counseling sessions.
2018 - Governor Walker announced the Alaska K - 12 Broadband Initiative, a partnership between EducationSuperHighway and DEED. The initiative fosters the idea that a quality education requires connectivity. The partnership will support equitable access to high-speed internet regardless of a school’s location, with geography often being a huge hindrance in the ability of schools to obtain scalable infrastructure, affordable bandwidth, and robust WiFi.
In the same year, the U.S. Department of Education developed the 2018 Native American and Alaska Native Children in School Program (NAM) Grant Competition. The goal of the program is to support the teaching, learning, and studying of Native American languages, alongside the English language. The competition supports the preservation and revitalization of Native American languages, and provides families with access to digital materials to enhance their child’s reading development.
Also in 2018, DEED introduced a collaboration with Common Sense Education to celebrate Alaska Digital Citizenship Week. This partnership is part of an effort to teach students to make safe decisions in the digital world. In preparation for Alaska Digital Citizenship Week, DEED released plans for classroom and family engagement on topics related to digital citizenship.
This online training program provides learning modules on children’s relationships, improving the lives of young children, before and after school care, and related topics.
Abused Women’s Aid in Crisis (AWAIC)
This organization has a hotline for reporting sexual violence and provides information on teen dating violence and technological abuse. It also hosts healthy relationship groups in Anchorage and training about domestic violence for professionals interacting with youth.
This outpatient clinic located near the Children’s Hospital at Providence provides sexual and physical abuse evaluations for children, and 24-hour on-call services for emergencies.
Alaska Children's Trust (ACT)
This organization generates funds and commits resources across the state of Alaska to prevent child abuse and neglect.
Alaska Children's Trust (ACT)
This organization generates funds and commits resources across the state of Alaska to prevent child abuse and neglect.
Alaska Department of Education & Early Development
This department is responsible for public education in the state. It provides links to external resources on school health and wellness.
Alaska Department of Public Safety
This law enforcement agency’s duties include maintaining the sex offender and child kidnapper registry, conducting background checks, and tracking missing persons cases throughout the state.
Alaska Internet Circle of Safety
The Alaska State Library and the Alaska Library Association have created the website as part of a program to educate parents on Internet safety. Resources include DVDs which can be borrowed from the libraries, as well as downloadable information.
Alaska Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force
The task force is based at the Anchorage Police Department and submits reports and statistics on online crimes against children to the U.S. Department of Justice. It meets regularly to discuss trends and cases.
Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault
This network provides a directory of support services and member organizations throughout the state. It also administers an online training course called “Understanding Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault.”
Alaska Society for Technology in Education
This professional organization promotes access to technology and information, and integrating technology into education. Every year, it hosts a conference and a digital media contest for students.
Alaska State Troopers
The website of the state police force includes information on the Alaska sex offender and child kidnapper registry requirements.
Alaska Surveillance of Child Abuse and Neglect Program (Alaska SCAN)
Alaska SCAN was established in 2008 to determine the magnitude of child maltreatment, identify at-risk groups, monitor changes in the incidence of child abuse over time, provide data to programs to monitor the effectiveness of their interventions and reduce child maltreatment in Alaska.
Alaska Telecom Association
This association secures funding for the Alaska Plan to improve and expand mobile broadband service to Alaskans across rural communities.
This organization works with local, state, and national policymakers to carry out the goals of the National Broadband Plan to increase broadband access, adoption, and use in Alaska.
Interior Alaska Center for Non-Violent Living
This organization provides 24-hour confidential support through a hotline, and also hosts programs to address domestic violence, sexual assault, and child sexual abuse.
This online resource for teens was created by AWAIC. The website covers the issue of teen dating violence, with information on warning signs, safety planning, abusive behavior and sexual violence.
Media Research Center of Alaska
This nonprofit organization promotes media literacy by educating the public on media bias and journalism ethics.
Office of Children’s Services
This office within the Department of Health and Social Services provides detailed information on reporting child abuse, including mandatory reporters, warning signs of abuse and warning signs of child sexual exploitation.
Stand Up Speak Up Alaska
This campaign focuses on engaging youth to end relationship violence and promote respect.
State of Alaska Department of Law
The Attorney General’s office gives information on protecting children, which includes the issues of child abuse, child pornography and exploitation and online safety.
This website contains information on the intersection of teaching, learning and technology in rural Alaska. Topics include cyberbullying, media literacy, digital citizenship, online etiquette and digital storytelling.
Recasting the Net: Promoting Wellness to Prevent Suicide in Alaska (2018)The Statewide Suicide Prevention Council Members
Alaska enacted the State of Alaska Suicide Prevention Plan extending from 2018 to 2022, to prevent and mitigate the risk factors contributing to suicide. The plan references several online tools for suicide awareness, prevention, intervention, and response.
Writing in Online Courses: How the Online Environment Shapes Writing Practices (2018)Phoebe Jackson, Christopher Weaver, Bob Mayberry
This paper found isolated students in Alaska taking distance learning classes were much more likely to respond to their peers' work. The paper finds the students' anonymity, the need to connect, and forced focus as being responsible for their unusual level of participation. The authors conclude online instruction reveals potential not available in the traditional classroom.
Native IYG: Improving Psychosocial Protective Factors for HIV/STI and Teen Pregnancy Prevention among Youth in American Indian/Alaska Native Communities (2017)Ross Shegog, Stephanie Craig Rushing, Gwenda Gorman, Cornelia Jessen, Travis L. Lane
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of Native It's Your Game. The study showed the internet-based curriculum demonstrated significantly improved short-term psychosocial determinants of sexual attitudes, compared with youth not completing Native IYG.
NATIVE-It's Your Game: Adapting a Technology-Based Sexual Health Curriculum for American Indian and Alaska Native Youth (2016)Ross Shegog, Stephanie Craig Rushing, Gwenda Gorman, Cornelia Jessen, Jennifer Torres, Travis L. Lane, Amanda Gaston, Taija Koogei Revels, Jennifer Williamson, Melissa F. Peskin, Jina D'Cruz, Susan Tortolero, Christin M. Markham
Sexually transmitted infection (STI) and birth rates among American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) youth indicate a need for effective middle school HIV/STI and pregnancy prevention to delay, or mitigate the consequences of early sexual activity. In response, this study developed Native It's Your Game, an internet-based sexual health curriculum.
Text Message Reminders Increased Colorectal Cancer Screening in a Randomized Trial With Alaska Native and American Indian People (2016)Clemma J. Muller, Renee F. Robinson, Julia Smith, Meghan A. Jernigan, Vanessa Hiratsuka, Denise A. Dillard, Dedra Buchwald
Alaska Native and American Indian (AN/AI) people have a high incidence of colorectal cancer (CRC) and CRC-relatd mortality. Although screening can prevent death from CRC, screening rates are low in this population. This study implemented a text messaging system that entailed up to three messages sent one month apart to AN/AI aged 40 to 75 years. The results of this study show the intervention increased CRC screening for AN/AI aged 50 to 75 years.
Exploring the Potential for Technology-Based Nutrition Education for Alaska Native WIC Recipients in Rural Southwest Alaska (2016)J.M. Power, A. Bersamin
The purpose of this study was to quantify media technology use among Alaska Native WIC recipients in Southwest Alaska to understand the feasibility of technology-based nutrition education.
Traditional to Contemporary: Linking Storytelling and Technology as an Indigenous Approach to Community-based Cancer Education in Alaska Native Communities (2015)M. Cueva, K. Cueva, L. Revels, R. Kuhnley, M. Dignan, A. Lanier
This project explored how viewing community health workers’ digital stories impacted Alaskan community members’ cancer perceptions and health behaviors.
Trends in Allegations and Investigations of Child Abuse and Neglect in Alaska (2013)D. Vadapalli, V. Hanna
The report discusses trends in allegations of child abuse and neglect and subsequent investigations in Alaska, from 2006 through 2012.
Digital Diversity: Broadband and Indigenous Populations in Alaska (2011)Heather E. Hudson
Approximately two-thirds of Alaska's indigenous population lives in over 200 rural villages, most of which are remote settlements with fewer than 200 people each. This research suggests a framework for digital diversity could be applied in these regions, and this framework may be relevant for considering how the concept of digital diversity could be applied in any other multiethnic or multicultural region.
Internet Crimes Against Children (2011)Justice Center, University of Alaska Anchorage
This article details efforts to combat child exploitation in Alaska and the U.S., with an emphasis on Intenet crimes against children.
Unpacking Race, Culture, and Class in Rural Alaska: Native and Non-Native Multidisciplinary Professionals' Perceptions of Child Sexual Abuse (2011)R. Bubar, K. Bundy-Fazioli
The study aimed to unpack notions of class, culture, and race as they relate to multidisciplinary team professionals and their perceptions of prevalence in child sexual abuse cases in rural Alaskan communities.
Domestic Violence and Child Abuse: Ten Lessons Learned in Rural Alaska (2001)L. Chamberlain
The paper reports on domestic violence and child abuse intervention training workshops in Alaska.
On the Frontier of Online Learning, in Galena, Alaska (1999)F. Odasz
This paper relates experiences in providing on-site Internet workshops to the newly networked Native-Alaskan village of Galena.
This section contains details of the state’s laws as they relate to sexual offenses, children and the use of the Internet in the commission of criminal activity. Where possible, sentence details have been given, including whether an increased custodial penalty is imposed where the victim is a child.
The age of consent in Alaska is 16 years old.
In Alaska, unless otherwise specified, the punishments for crimes is as follows:
- Unclassified felony: Maximum term of 99 years when the defendant has been previously convicted of two or more serious felonies.
- Class A felony: Maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years, suggested sentence is five to eight years for a first offense.
- Class B felony: Maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years, suggested sentence is one to three years for a first offense.
- Class C felony: Maximum term of imprisonment of five years, suggested sentence is zero to two years for a first offense.
- Class A misdemeanor: Maximum term of imprisonment of one year.
Class B misdemeanor: Maximum term of imprisonment of 90 days.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.260. Stalking in the first degree. Defines stalking in the first degree (among other criteria) as when the victim is under 16 years of age. Stalking in the first degree is a class C felony, carrying with it a prison term of up to five years.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.300. Kidnapping. A person who restrains another with the intent to inflict physical injury or sexual assault the person or place him/her in fear of such action, among other reasons, by holding the person or exposing him/her to substantial risk of physical injury is guilty of this crime. This is an unclassified felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.360. Human trafficking in the first degree. States that a person commits this crime if he/she compels or induces another person to come to this state to engage in sexual conduct, adult entertainment or labor by force or threat, or by deception. An offense is a Class A felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.410. Sexual assault in the first degree. An offender commits the crime of sexual assault in the first degree if the offender engages in sexual penetration with another person without consent of that person, the offender attempts to engage in sexual penetration with another person without consent of that person and causes serious physical injury to that person, the offender engages in sexual penetration with another person, or the offender engages in sexual penetration with a person who the offender knows is unaware that a sexual act is being committed. Sexual assault in the first degree is an unclassified felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.434. Sexual abuse of a minor in the first degree. Defines sexual abuse of a minor in the first degree. It includes a defendant of 16 years of age having sexual intercourse with a minor aged under 13 years of age and someone of 18 years of age or older having intercourse with a minor under 16 years of age. This offense is an unclassified felony. The maximum penalty is 99 years’ imprisonment.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.435. Sexual abuse of a minor in the second degree. A person who is (a) 17 or older and engages in sexual penetration with a person between the ages of 13 and 14, who is at least four years younger that the offender, or aids or encourages a person who is of that age to engage in sexual penetration with another person; (b) 16 or older and engages in sexual contact with a person under 13 years old, or aids or encourages a person who is of that age to engage in sexual contact with another person; (c) 18 or older and engages in sexual penetration with a person who is 16 or 17 years old and at least three years younger than the offender, when the offender is in a position of authority over the victim; (d) 16 years old and engages in sexual penetration with a person who is under 13 years old and at least three years younger than the offender; among other provisions. This is classed as a Class B felony. The maximum penalty is 99 years’ imprisonment. Sentences for a first offense range from five to 15 years.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.438. Sexual abuse of a minor in the third degree. Defines the offense a person 17 or older, engaging in sexual activity with a minor aged from 13 to 15 years of age and more than four years younger than the offender. This offense is considered to be a Class C felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.440. Sexual abuse of a minor in the fourth degree. A person who is under 16 years old and engages in sexual contact with a person under 13 years old who is at least three years younger than the offender; or who is 18 or older and engages in sexual contact with a person who is 16 or 17 years old and is at least three years younger than the offender, when the offender is in a position of authority over the victim. This is a Class A misdemeanor.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.452. Online enticement of a minor. Defines the online enticement of a minor (under 16 years of age) to engage in (defined) conduct, using a computer, by someone of 18 years of age or older. The offense is defined as a Class C felony, unless the offender was required to register as a sex offender or child kidnapper in which case it is a Class B felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.455. Unlawful exploitation of a minor. Provides a definition of unlawful exploitation of a minor and includes inducing or hiring a minor of under 18 years of age to engage in sexual conduct or exhibition which is filmed, broadcast or recorded through any means. A parent or guardian who allows the child in their care to engage in such conduct, knowing the intention of the depicting the conduct is also liable. This is classed as a Class B felony or, if the defendant has previously been convicted of distribution of child pornography or a similar offense, a Class A felony. The maximum penalty is 99 years’ imprisonment. Sentences for a first offense range from five to 15 years.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.458. Indecent exposure in the first degree. A person violates this section if he/she violates section 11.41.460 within the observation of a person under 16 years old, and the person intentionally masturbates and has previously been convicted under section 11.41.460 or a similar law. This is a Class C felony. The maximum sentence is 99 years’ imprisonment. The sentencing range for a first offense is between two and 12 years.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.460. Indecent exposure in the second degree. A person commits this offense if he/she knowingly exposes his/her genitals in the presence of another person with reckless disregard for the offensive, insulting, or frightening effect such an action may have. If the person exposes him/herself in front of a person under 16 years old this is a Class A misdemeanor; if the person exposes him/herself in front of a person 16 or older this is a Class B misdemeanor.
- Alaska Statute 11.41.468. Forfeiture of property used in sexual offense. Property used to aid a violation of sexual assault, sexual abuse of a minor, incest, online enticement of a minor, unlawful exploitation of a minor, or indecent exposure may be forfeited to the state upon the conviction of the offender. In this section, “property” means computer equipment, telecommunications equipment, photography equipment, video or audio equipment, books, magazines, photographs, videotapes, audiotapes, and any equipment or device, regardless of format or technology employed, that can be used to store, create, modify, receive, transmit, or distribute digital or analog information, including images, motion pictures, and sounds.
- Alaska Statute 11.46.740. Criminal use of computer. A person commits this offense if, having no right to do so, the person knowingly accesses, causes to be accessed, or exceeds the person’s authorized access to a computer, computer system, computer program, computer network or any part of a computer system or network, and in doing so (a) obtains information concerning a person; (b) introduces false information into a computer with intent to damage or enhance the data record or financial reputation of a person; (c) introduces false information into a computer and, with criminal negligence, damages or enhances the data record or the financial reputation of a person; (d) obtains proprietary information of another person; (e) obtains information that is only available to the public for a fee; (f) introduces instructions, a computer program or other information that tampers with, disrupts, or destroys a computer system; or (g) encrypts or decrypts data. A violation of this section is a Class C felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.51.100 Endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree. A person commits the crime of endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree if, being a parent, guardian, or other person legally charged with the care of a child under 16 years of age, the person intentionally deserts the child in a place under circumstances creating a substantial risk of physical injury to the child, leaves the child with another person knowing that the person has previously physically mistreated or had sexual contact with any child, and the other person causes physical injury to or engages in sexual contact with the child, or recklessly fails to provide an adequate quantity of food or liquids to a child, causing protracted impairment of the child’s health. Endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree under (a)(3) of this section is a class B felony if the child dies; class C felony if the child suffers sexual contact, sexual penetration, or serious physical injury; or class A misdemeanor if the child suffers physical injury. Endangering the welfare of a child under (b) of this subsection is a class A misdemeanor. Endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree under (a)(1), (2), or (4) of this section is a class C felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.61.116. Sending an explicit image of a minor. A person commits the offense of sending an explicit image of a minor if the person, with intent to annoy or humiliate another person, distributes an electronic photograph or video that depicts the genitals, anus, or female breast of that other person taken when that person was a minor under 16 years of age. Sending an explicit image of a minor is (1) a class B misdemeanor if the person distributes the image to another person; (2) a class A misdemeanor if the person distributes the image to an Internet website that is accessible to the public.
- Alaska Statute 11.61.118. Harassment in the first degree. A person commits the crime of harassment in the first degree if the person subjects another person to offensive physical contact and the offensive physical contact is contact with human or animal blood, mucus, saliva, semen, urine, vomitus, or feces; or the offensive physical contact is contact by the person touching through clothing another person’s genitals, buttocks, or female breast. Harassment in the first degree is a class A misdemeanor.
- Alaska Statute 11.61.120. Harassment in the second degree. A person commits this offence if he/she makes an anonymous or obscene telephone call, an obscene electronic communication, or a telephone call or electronic communication that threatens physical injury or sexual contact; or makes an anonymous or obscene telephone call, an obscene electronic communication, or a telephone call or electronic communication that threatens physical injury or sexual contact; among other actions. Harassment in the second degree is a Class B misdemeanor.
- Alaska Statute 11.61.123. Indecent viewing or photography. A person commits this crime if he/she knowingly views, or produces a picture of, the private exposure of the genitals, anus, or female breast of another person and the view or production is without the knowledge or consent of the person’s parent or guardian if the person viewed or shown is under 16 years old and that of the person viewed or shown if he/she is at least 13 years old. Each viewing of a person, and each production of a picture of a person, whose genitals, anus, or female breast are viewed or are shown in a picture constitutes a separate violation of this section. This is a Class C felony if the person viewed or shown in the picture was, at the time, a minor, and is a Class A misdemeanor if the person viewed or shown was, at the time, an adult.
- Alaska Statute 11.61.125. Distribution of child pornography. A person commits this crime if he/she brings or causes to be brought into the state for distribution, or in the state distributes, or in the state possesses, prepares, publishes, or prints with intent to distribute, any material that visually or aurally depicts conduct described in AS 11.41.455, knowing that the production of the material involved the use of a child under 18 years of age who engaged in the conduct. The possession of 100 or more films, audio, video, electronic, or electromagnetic recordings, photographs, negatives, slides, books, newspapers, magazines, or other materials, including a combination of these items totaling 100 or more, is prima facie evidence of distribution and intent to distribute. This is a Class B felony, unless the defendant has previously been convicted of distribution of child pornography or a similar offense, in which case it is a Class A felony. The maximum penalty is 99 years’ imprisonment. Sentences for a first offense range from five to 15 years.
- Alaska Statute 11.61.127. Possession of child pornography. This section defines the offense of knowingly possessing child pornography and states that each individual item found is classed as a separate violation. This is a Class C felony, carrying a prison sentence of up to five years for a first offense. The maximum sentence is 99 years’ imprisonment. The sentencing range for a first offense is between two and 12 years.
- Alaska Statute 11.61.128. Electronic distribution of indecent material to minors. A person commits this crime if, being 18 or older, knowingly distributes to another person by computer material that depicts actual or simulated sexual conduct, when the other person is, or the offender believes him/her to be, under 16 years old. It is not a defense that the victim was not actually under 16 years old. This is a Class C felony, unless the defendant was required to register as a sex offender or child kidnapper at the time of the offense, in which case it is a Class B felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.66.110. Sex trafficking in the first degree. (a) A person commits the crime of sex trafficking in the first degree if the person (1) induces or causes another person to engage in prostitution through the use of force; (2) as other than a patron of a prostitute, induces or causes another person who is under 20 years of age to engage in prostitution; or (3) induces or causes a person in that person’s legal custody to engage in prostitution. In a prosecution under (a)(2) of this section, it is not a defense that the defendant reasonably believed that the person induced or caused to engage in prostitution was 20 years of age or older. Sex trafficking in the first degree is a class A felony. A person convicted under (a)(2) of this section is guilty of an unclassified felony.
- Alaska Statute 11.66.300. Prohibiting minors from being present at an adult entertainment business. The owner or an agent or employee of the owner of a business that offers adult entertainment may not with criminal negligence allow a person under the age of 18 years to enter and remain within premises where adult entertainment is offered. A person who violates this section is guilty of a class A misdemeanor. Each violation is a separate offense.
- Alaska Statute 12.63.010. Registration of sex offenders and related requirements. This section requires a convicted sex offender or child kidnapper to register when physically present in the state. Registrations must be updated annually.
- Alaska Statute 12.65.087. Central registry of sex offenders. This section authorizes the Department of Public Safety to maintain a central, public registry of persons required to register under section 12.63.010.
- Alaska Statute 12.65.130. State child fatality review team duties. The state child fatality review team shall assist the state medical examiner in determining the cause and manner of the deaths in this state of children under 18 years of age.