Thursday, February 21, 2013
History truly repeated itself when the top three 2013 Contra Costa County High School Academic Decathlon finishing teams were a carbon copy of last year's results. At the exciting Academic Decathlon Awards Reception, held February 4, Campolindo High School (Moraga) Red Team (pictured above) once again finished in first place, and will go on to represent Contra Costa County in the California State Academic Decathlon competition. Also in repeating rolls, Campolindo's Blue Team, took 2nd place, and Acalanes (Lafayette) High School finished in 3rd.
Directed by the Contra Costa County Office of Education (CCCOE) and with the assistance of community volunteers, the county's Academic Decathlon provides an opportunity for high school students to compete as individuals and teams in a series of ten academic tests and demonstrations. The curriculum includes art, economics, language and literature, social science, mathematics, music, science, essay, interview, speech (prepared and impromptu), and the Super Quiz™ Relay.
Approximately, 170 participating high school students had been studying and preparing for this event with their coaches since September. This year's Academic Decathlon theme was Russia, and the Super Quiz™ focused on the areas the participating students had been preparing for with the comprehension portion of Academic Decathlon, e.g., science, art, economics, and literature.
This year's teams represented the following high schools: Acalanes (Lafayette), California (San Ramon), Campolindo (Moraga), Las Lomas (Walnut Creek), Miramonte (Orinda), and Pittsburg (Pittsburg). High school teams were made up of nine students, grades 9-12, with a maximum of three students in each of the following divisions: Honors (3.75-4.00 GPA), Scholastic (3.00-3.74 GPA) and Varsity (2.99 GPA and below).
High schools that have more than nine students who want to participate in Academic Decathlon, can field more than one team, e.g., Campolindo's Red and Blue Teams. The teams can also bring guests or alternate participants from their school.
The Campolindo Red Team will now represent Contra Costa County at the California State Academic Decathlon, to be held in Sacramento, March 14-17.
During the awards ceremony, many individual awards were also given out. This year's Top Overall Academic Decathlon Individual Award went to Zach Scherer, of Campolindo High School. All Academic Decathlon resultss are posted on the CCCOE's website.
The Academic Decathlon was first created by Dr. Robert Peterson, former Superintendent of Schools in Orange County, California. Firmly believing that everyone's learning potential can be maximized through competitive challenge, Dr. Peterson set in motion the contest that has since come to be recognized as the most prestigious high school academic team competition in the United States. The program spread rapidly throughout the states due to the success and excitement it engendered. USAD was founded in 1981.
This year's National Academic Decathlon will be held in Minneapolis, Minn., April 25 - 27.