Los Angeles High School Headed to Nation Decathlon Competition

A school from Los Angeles Unified is headed to Texas to compete in the national decathlon competition.

El Camino Real Charter High School conquered the 2018 California Academic Decathlon competition.

At the state contest, the team scored 61,612.40. The study topic was Africa, and students competed in 10-quiz competitions involving speech, interviews, essay, art, economics, language and literature, mathematics, music, social science plus the Super Quiz.

The El Camino Real Charter High School decathletes are: Inesh Ahuja, Ashtar Fayoumi, Matthew Fitzmorris, Briana Lincoln, Rachel Markenson, Nolan Origer, Avery Tamura, Maya Teitz and Trevor Winnard. The coach is Stephanie Franklin.

The nine‐member team will represent California at the 36th Annual United States Academic Decathlon Competition, scheduled April 19-22, in Frisco, Texas. If they prevail, California will claim its 16th national title. LAUSD will also celebrate its 18th national title, and 23rd state title.

The Conquistadores last won the coveted state and national titles in 2014. A perennial powerhouse, El Camino Real Charter High School won their first L.A. Unified Academic Decathlon nearly a decade ago in 1989.

“Another stellar performance from El Camino Real Charter High School,” said Board Member Scott M. Schmerelson. “Congratulations on this victorious milestone in your ACADECA career. Year after year, you have mastered and outperformed each other, leading to victory and your personal best.” 

Coming in second in the state competition, current national champion, Granada Hill Charter High School with 60,949.20 points, will advance to the national online competition in the large school category, also held in April.

In other congratulatory news, Granada Hill Charter placed first in the Super Quiz competition with 5,880.00. 

El Camino Real Charter finished second in the Super Quiz with 5,670.00 points and Franklin High School came in third place with 5,320.00 points.

“Congratulations to our outstanding decathletes and their phenomenal coaches,” said Interim Superintendent Vivian Ekchian. “On behalf of the L.A. Unified family, we are inspired by your drive, hard work and competitive spirit. Thank you for proudly representing our school district and bringing back another state title."

The winners were announced before a boisterous crowd at the 2018 California Academic Decathlon’s award ceremony at the Sacramento Memorial Auditorium. Rounding out the top 10 scoring teams

Franklin High School finished fourth behind South Pasadena High School with a score of 57,737.40. Garfield High School finished seventh with a score of 53,221.50 and Bell High School placed 10th with a score of 52,298.30.

“I am so proud of the consistency and tenacity of our east schools!” said Board Member Dr. Ref Rodriguez. “I am inspired and in awe of the students from Franklin and Bell for competing three years in a row at the State Academic Decathlon. Congratulations to El Camino Real Charter for winning this year’s Academic Decathlon. Thank you to all of the decathletes for your superb school spirit, to the teachers and coaches who supported them on this unforgettable journey, and especially to the parents for their sacrifice and commitment.”

In all, 600 students representing 69 high school teams from across the state competed in this year’s California Academic Decathlon. Teams are composed of three Honor students (3.75 and above GPA), three Scholastic students (3.00-3.74 GPA), and three Varsity students (2.99 GPA and below).

The Academic Decathlon originated locally in Orange County, California, in 1968 under the direction of the late Dr. Robert Peterson, then Orange County Superintendent of Schools. The competition went statewide in 1979 and has been a national event since 1982. LAUSD earned its first of many state and national trophies in 1986, represented by Marshall Senior High School.


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