About 450 students, staff and family enjoyed Belleville District 118’s annual Young Authors Conference on Saturday. The 34th annual event at Central Junior High featured guest speaker Jennifer Ward, who writes children’s picture books. Ward has more than 800,000 books in print — both picture books and parenting books.
At the conference, participants read the manuscripts of selected students from each of the district’s 11 schools. Students and families had a breakfast and heard Ward speak before school’s recognized young authors. The event was sponsored by the PTA Council.
Best of school honors went to: Danae Tyus, of Abraham Lincoln, Ellie Mueller, of Douglas, Thor Fuhrman, of Franklin, Mira Deeke, of Henry Raab, Anyae Turner, of Jefferson, Zoe Wallis, of Roosevelt, Karina Herrera, of Union, Alexis Schuler, of Westhaven, Kylie Schomber, of Central Junior High, and Olivia McHenry, of West Junior High.
Special recognition went to: Sema’J White, of Abraham Lincoln, Lily Nabb, of Douglas, Rhianna Fenton, of Franklin, Peach Zehner-Ebersole, of Henry Raab, Artazia Crape, of Jefferson, Trey Goodrich, of Roosevelt, Sarai Morris, of Union, Ryann Gordon, of Westhaven, Nathan Domescik, of Central Junior High, and Stella Parriott, of West Junior High.
OTHS a state exemplar
O’Fallon Township High School was tapped as the state exemplar during the 2015 Illinois ACT State Organization conference in Oak Brook in December.
The school reports it was recognized for students having an average 23.1 composite ACT score, with a lower than average per-student instructional spending. The district spends $5,415 per student; the state average on instructional spending is more than $7,000.
The state exemplars will be considered for semifinalist status by a committee, which will submit four semifinalists per category for national consideration. To learn more about the ACT College and Career Readiness Campaign, go to www.act.org/readinesscampaign.
Two chess competitions in January
Immaculate Conception School, in Columbia, hosted seven schools from the Belleville Diocese in a chess tournament on Jan. 23. More than 175 students competed, including 52 from the host school.
Queen of Peace in Belleville took first place with 15.5 points but Immaculate Conception was close behind with 15 points. St. Teresa in Belleville came in third with 14 points. The other schools there were Blessed Sacrament in Belleville, St. Clare in O’Fallon, St. Joseph in Freeburg and St. John the Baptist in Smithton.
On Jan. 30, St. Teresa, in Belleville, hosted a chess tournament with 194 students. The host school won with 16 points, ICS again came in second, tying with Queen of Peace, with 15 points. Other schools participating were St. Clare, Blessed Sacrament, St. Joseph and St. John the Baptist.
Science Olympiad this weekend
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville expects about 450 students on campus from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday for the annual Science Olympiad tournament.
The sixth-through-12th grade students from 21 schools will compete in interactive events that test their science, technology, engineering and math abilities.
Teams of 15 students each will demonstrate skills and knowledge in life, earth and physical science as well as engineering devices. New events this year include computer game design, alternative energy and the science of groundwater.
Teams will be based at the Morris University Center on the SIUE campus, with events in the Engineering Building, Science West Building and Peck Hall.
“No other program immerses students across all STEM fields on the same level,” said Mike Avara, regional director of Science Olympiad. “Not only are science background and skills emphasized, but also the concept of teamwork and collaboration in research and problem-solving.”
SIUE’s event is one of nine regional competitions in the state, leading teams will advance to the state tournament at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in April.
Design contest wants entries
Middle and high school students can win $200 or $300 in a bridge design contest, and go on to national rounds.
The American Society of Civil Engineers–St. Louis Chapter will accept as many designs from each contestant as he or she wishes to submit. Contestants in middle and high school should download Bridge Designer 2016, free, from the https://bridgecontest.org/ site, where you also register your team including using the St. Louis Local Code SLBC. The bridge design is for a virtual bridge, and the contest is open until March 25.
For more information, contact the local contest coordinator at email@example.com.
Kahok is in Mascot Madness
Collinsville’s mascot is part of a Mascot Madness bracket, a contest sponsored by Compast SportsNet and CSNChicago.com.
Voting started at noon Monday, and the first voting period ends at 4 p.m. Thursday. The Collinsville Kahoks mascot is up against Andrew Thunderbolts in the Skyline Region.
Go to www.csnchicago.com/MascotMadness to vote on the best mascot in each bracket every week between noon Monday and 4 p.m. Thursday.
Mascoutah and Belleville West WYSE teams move on
The Mascoutah High School team placed first and Belleville West second in the Worldwide Youth in Science and Engineering regional at Southwestern Illinois College in Belleville on Friday. It is Mascoutah’s third regional title in four years, and the team is advancing to sectional competition in March. Mascoutah High School’s WYSE team won three of the events and placed second in another two; the team score was 490 out of 500.
Montessori expanding school
Metro East Montessori School in Granite City will open an adolescent program in the fall. The school currently serves preschool through sixth grade students.
The new program for grades seventh through ninth will offer two “academically challenging and nurturing environments,” according to the website, at the Granite City campus and at Red Fox Paso Fino Farm in Troy.
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Bridget McGuire at 618-931-2508.