Anchorage’s Service High principal resigns after investigation into ‘community concerns’

A sign says Anchorage School District.
The Anchorage School District Education Center street sign. (Mayowa Aina/Alaska Public Media)

Service High School’s principal has resigned, a month after he was placed under investigation due to unspecified “community concerns,” according to the Anchorage School District. 

The district announced Allen Wardlaw’s departure in an email Friday to Service High families. Wardlaw had been on administrative leave since April when the district said it launched an investigation into concerns linked to him.

The district has refused to comment on the nature of the concerns. A district spokeswoman said Friday that, “because it is a personnel matter, the district cannot comment further at this time.” The email to families from Kersten Johnson-Struempler, the district’s senior director of secondary education, also did not say why Wardlaw resigned or describe the results of the investigation.

The email said Service High Assistant Principal Imtiaz Azzam will continue as acting principal for the remainder of the school year.

“As a result of Mr. Wardlaw’s resignation, ASD will move forward with hiring a new principal for the 2023-24 school year and would like to invite you to be a part of this process,” Johnson-Struempler wrote.

Her email says the Service High community can fill out a survey about ideal characteristics for the next principal. It says there will be an open house to meet the new principal in the fall.

“We are committed to you and the entire Service High School community,” Johnson-Struempler wrote. “We will provide you with the strong, stable, and safe learning environment you expect.”

Wardlaw had worked as a teacher and assistant principal at Clark Middle School before becoming Service High principal in 2021.

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