Despite its relatively smaller size, Denair High School definitely left an impression as it triumphed over larger competitors at the 35th Annual Stanislaus County Academic Decathlon last week.
The school was awarded third place out of 12 competing schools at the culmination of the competition on Saturday, marking the fifth year DHS was named the highest performing small school.
Oakdale High School and Ceres High School finished first and second place, respectively.
The Academic Decathlon includes a series of 10 academic tests and demonstrations for students to showcase their skills. These events include mathematics, language and literature, economics, essay, fine arts, speech, music, interview, science, social science, and super quiz.
Co-sponsored by the Stanislaus County Office of Education, Gallo Foundation, and Mocse Credit Union, the decathlon aims to promote interschool competition in academics.
“Our objective is to recognize student achievement and to emphasize the positive dimensions of education,” said SCOE Student Events Coordinator Cheryl Goulart.
Comprised of a two-day series of tests, speeches, and interviews, the decathlon is widely known as the biggest academic event for local high schools, where students were challenged to address this year’s theme: “New Alternatives in Energy: Ingenuity and Innovation.”
DHS students Jennifer Calderon, Lewis Koehn, and Noah Johnson all took home gold medals individually.
In the honors category, encompassing students who hold a 3.75 through 4.00 Grade Point Average (GPA), Calderon was awarded gold in the interview portion, as well as a fourth in art and a fifth in language and literature.
Also in the honors category, Koehn won gold in math, as well as a fifth in interview and a fifth in economics.
Johnson, who was placed in the scholastic category that includes students who maintain a 3.00 through 3.74 GPA, was awarded gold in language and literature, as well as silver in economics, bronze in art, bronze in music, bronze in social science, and fourth in science.
Altogether, the 16 students representing DHS brought home an impressive 38 medals.
Oakdale High School will go on to represent Stanislaus County at the California Academic Decathlon State Finals from March 19 to March 22 in Sacramento.