It’s getting to a point where the officials of the US Academic Decathlon should just hand out a permanent trophy to Granada Hills Charter, and give the other competing schools something else to shoot for.
The defending champion Highlanders scored a third consecutive victory – and their sixth national title in the past seven years – at the annual competition held April 20-22 in Madison, WI.
Granada Hills totaled 54,507.7 out of a possible 66,000 points to defeat more than 500 other teams representing high schools from across the U.S., Canada, China and the United Kingdom.
Highland Park High School in Texas was second for the second year.
“These students have made history,” said Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board Member Scott M. Schmerelson, whose district includes Granada Hills. “Congratulations to each of them for another stellar performance and for brilliantly representing LA Unified.”
On Monday, April 23, the Granada Hills team of Mark Aguila, Jordan Barretto, Sabrina Carlos, Sebastian Gonzalez, Christopher Lo, Kevin Ly, Aishah Mahmud, Melissa Santos and Peter Shin, and faculty coaches Mathew Arnold, Harsimar Dhanoa, Jonathan Sturtevant and Rachael Phipps, were treated to a rally featuring cheerleaders and bagpipers at the school's flagpole.
LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King added her praise for the nine-member team and its dedicated coaches.
“The entire LA Unified family is extremely proud of your victory and stalwart commitment to teamwork,” she said. “You are all fine examples of champions.”
The Academic Decathlon is a rigorous test in which teams compete in 10 categories: art, economics, essay, interview, language and literature, mathematics, music, science, social science and speech. This year’s study subject was World War II.
On its way to the national competition in Madison, WI, Granada Hills captured the Academic Decathlon contests for LAUSD and California.