El Camino Real Charter High earns national Academic Decathlon crown in online competition

The Academic Decathlon team from El Camino Real Charter High School in Woodland Hills has captured the school’s fifth online national title.

And they learned a whole lot about John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev in the process.

The nine-member team studied “The Cold War” — the decades-long political rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union, and their various allies — and answered questions about the art, economics, literature, math, music, science and social history of the period.

The students were also judged on their essays, interviews and speeches, also focusing on international politics ranging from the late 1940s to 1991, when the Soviet Union busted apart.

The El Camino Real team racked up 41,845.7 out of 48,000 points to earn their online national title. Students on the team earned a total of 55 medals in various categories of the competition.

This year’s team included Ayan Ahmed, Patrick Chau, Mackenna Daum, William Fitzmorris, Brian Friedman, Chantelle Miller, Collin Origer, Eden Ozeri and Bryan Vadhin.

Earlier this year, the team won the Southern California Independent Charter Academic Decathlon Regional Competition, held virtually on Jan. 30 and Feb. 6.

The team is coached by John Dalsass, Karen Evens and Stephanie Franklin.

Academic decathlon teams consist of nine students, all in 9th-12th grades. They are groups in trios, based on their grade-point average:

  • The Honor group has a 3.80 and above GPA;
  • The Scholastic group is 3.20-3.799 GPA; and
  • The Varsity group are students who have a GPA up to 3.199.

Information about El Camino Real Charter High School: www.ecrchs.net

Information about the United States Academic Decathlon: www.usad.org/The-Experience.aspx

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