2019 CAZENOVIA HIGH SCHOOL ACADEMIC DECATHLON TEAM ADVANCES TO NATIONAL COMPETITION

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PRESS RELEASE

Cazenovia CSD Communications Office

March 18, 2019

Photo of the team, The 2019 Cazenovia High School Academic Decathlon Team. Back Row: Ben Wightman (coach), Riley O’Brien, Alyson Woolbert, Carter Williams, Emma Lowry, Allie Everard, Gwen O’Brien, Alex Holmes. Front Row: Ian Melvin, Ronan DeFanti, Kate Martellock.
The 2019 Cazenovia High School Academic Decathlon Team. Back Row: Ben Wightman (coach), Riley O’Brien, Alyson Woolbert, Carter Williams, Emma Lowry, Allie Everard, Gwen O’Brien, Alex Holmes. Front Row: Ian Melvin, Ronan DeFanti, Kate Martellock.

For the first time in five years, Cazenovia High School will represent New York State at the Academic Decathlon National Competition.

The Cazenovia team, consisting of ten high school students in grades 10-12, won the State Competition at SUNY Brockport on February 9th.

”It was hard fought for and happily received,” reflects team captain Ronan DeFanti, “the team is more than ready to throw our full effort into preparing to try and win our division.”

“This really is a reflection on the students’ hard work and dedication,” says team coach Ben Wightman, “Academic Decathlon competitors cannot rely on technology for instant answers. They get a 3½ inch binder of curriculum at the beginning of the year, and it’s up to them to become experts by competition day.”

Academic Decathlon tests students’ knowledge in ten subjects: art, music, literature, math, economics, science, social science, speech, interview, and essay. Competitors must participate in every event. Furthermore, each team must include 2-3 students with an A average, 2-3 with a B average, and 2-3 with a C average.

“It’s not just for honors kids,” notes Wightman, “lack of top-to-bottom balance kept us away from Nationals in recent years. This year’s group has been more well-rounded, and more willing to push one another.”

The team is now bound for Bloomington, Minnesota, where they will take on schools from the United States, China, and England in late April. “We’ve got a long road ahead of us for fundraising, but it’ll all be worth it when our hard work pays off and we get to represent New York!” said vice president Kate Martellock.

The team is seeking to raise $4,000 to defray some of the costs of participating in this opportunity. “Our students are responsible for their personal costs,” Wightman explains, “we would like to raise some of that money collectively, because we would hate for this achievement to be a financial burden on our families.”

Donations to the team can be submitted online at:

https://www.myschoolbucks.com/ver2/stores/getstoremain?clientKey=ZZH4ZX5U1X082ZC, or mailed to the Cazenovia Central School District at 31 Emory Avenue, Cazenovia, NY 13035. Checks can be made out to C.C.S.D., with “Academic Decathlon” in the memo line.


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