Marshall High School Is Back: LAUSD’s First State & National Academic Decathlon WinnerTakes It All

LOS ANGELES (Feb. 7, 2014) — Steadily fighting their way back to the top of their game, John Marshall High School won the 33rd Annual LAUSD Academic Decathlon competition, leading all District high school teams in scoring with 55,785.7 points. The highest score possible was 65,400 points.

For the first time since 1994, the Barristers will vie for the glory of capturing the title of state academic decathlon champions next month in Sacramento. Previously, Marshall High won the state and national championships in 1986 and 1994.

"I join with the extended Marshall High School family in saluting the students, their families and their coaches for this tremendous win in the Academic Decathlon,” said Board Member Bennett Kayser. “To think it was just two years ago that the entire Academic Decathlon program was almost eliminated at the LAUSD but for the goodwill of our employees who took pay cuts to save this and other valuable programs. The entire school district and the Marshall community will surely be cheering for the students as they head
to Sacramento!"

Superintendent John Deasy also cheered for Marshall’s success. “Congratulations to the players and coaches from Marshall for their tremendous victory in the 2014 LAUSD decathlon,” he said. “I wish Marshall and all the top teams the best as they strive to keep the national championship in the LAUSD family.”

Members of the Marshall team are: Aninda Bhowmick, Kimiyo Bremer, Alexander Guillen, Kenneth Huh, Ha Min Ko, John Lascano, Wen Lee, Alayna Myrick and Marvin Paparisto. The coach is Larry Welch. The team advances to the 2014 California Academic Decathlon competition, scheduled March 20-23, in Sacramento. Since 1987, L.A. Unified has won 19 state contests and 14 national titles.

Joining Marshall High School competing in the California Academic Decathlon contest are several other high schools: Granada Hills Charter, El Camino Real Charter, Taft Charter, Franklin, Garfield, Bell, Hamilton, Narbonne, Van Nuys, Grant (first time advancing to State) and North Hollywood.

Reigning state and national champs, Granada Hills Charter School earned second place honors with 55,728.4 points, El Camino Real Charter High School placed third with 55,356.4, Taft Charter High School nabbed fourth place honors 46,874.9, and Franklin High School finished fifth with 46,763.3 points.

Rounding out the Top 10 scoring schools were Garfield High School, sixth-place, with 45,070.0 points; Bell High School, seventh-place, with 45,016.3 points; Hamilton High School, eighth-place, with 44,419.9 points; Narbonne High School, ninth-place, with 43,814.3 points; and Van Nuys High School, 10th-place, with 42,816.0 points.

The announcements were made at L.A. Unified’s 2014 Academic Decathlon awards ceremony at Hollywood High School. Hundreds of decathletes, representing 59 high school teams in the District, gathered in the auditorium at Hollywood High School to celebrate their achievements with family members, friends, teachers, principals, LAUSD staff, and other supporters. Top scoring students also were honored with individual medals and trophies for academic achievement.

Over the years, L.A. Unified has emerged as an academic decathlon powerhouse, with several of its high school teams consistently winning local, state and national titles. Currently, L.A. Unified boasts more championships—14—than any other school district in the country.

Marvin Paparisto from Marshall High School again took top prize in the Honor Division (grade-point average of 3.75 and above) with 9154.3 points. Aninda Bhowmick, from Marshall High School, was honored as the best scoring student in the Scholastic Division (GPA 3.00-3.74) with 8801.4 points; and Rohan Boone from El Camino Real Charter High School, was recognized as the highest scoring student in the Varsity Division (GPA 2.99 and below) with 8315.0.

El Camino Real Charter High School and Marshall High School tied for first place with 4800 as the victors of the Super Quiz competition. The highest score possible was 5,400 points. Granada Hills Charter High School placed second with 4350 points.

In all, 11 decathletes earned perfect scores in the Super Quiz relay, held February 1, at the Roybal Learning Center.

“All of our Decathletes are scholars and champions,” said Cliff Ker, coordinator of the District’s Academic Decathlon. “The Decathletes from Marshall have worked long and hard for this honor. I am proud of them and expect all of our teams that advance to the state competition to do very well.”

Kenia Gomez from Fremont High School won the Coach of the Year award.

In the academic decathlon competition, each school team is comprised of nine students—three students from three different grade-point average (GPA) categories—Varsity (2.99 GPA and below), Scholastic (3.00-3.74 GPA) and Honor (3.75 and above GPA).

This year’s LAUSD Academic Decathlon 10-quiz competition involved speech, interviews (prepared and impromptu), essay, art, economics, language and literature, mathematics, music, social science and “Super Quiz” written and oral relay. The scores of all 10 quizzes were tallied together to declare the winner of this year’s LAUSD Academic Decathlon. This year’s study topic was World War I.

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Contact: Monica Carazo (213) 241-6766




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