And Now … Some Good News
Three MCPS graduating seniors have been recognized this week as U.S. Presidential Scholars. They are among five scholars from the state of Maryland, and 161 across the country.
Maria Christina Hancu of Poolesville High School; Pranav Tadikonda of Richard Montgomery High School and Robert Wachen of Winston Churchill High School have been named U.S. Presidential Scholars. The students were chosen by the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars based on their academic success, artistic excellence, essays, school evaluations and transcripts, as well as community service, leadership and commitment to high ideals.
The honored students were asked to select their most influential teacher.
Hancu chose Jordan White, English teacher at Shenendehowa High School (Clifton Park, N.Y.); Tadikonda chose Katherine Lin, chemistry teacher at Richard Montgomery; and Wachen selected Jonathan Lee, science teacher at Churchill.
Poolesville Student Selected as Maryland State Member of the BOEs
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has selected Poolesville High School student Jason Wu to serve as the 35th Maryland State Student Member of the Board of Education. Jason is a junior at Poolesville and a model leader from the Montgomery County Regional Student Government Association. He will be sworn in this summer.
Blake Student Performs on America’s Got Talent
James Hubert Blake High School freshman Kelvin Dukes performed on America’s Got Talent on June 2. The 14-year-old Dukes sang Ain’t No Way by Aretha Franklin. Watch the video.
Students Win Awards in K-12 Poster Art Contest
Thirteen MCPS students have been honored for their artwork highlighting prominent Asian Americans and their contributions in the U.S. The Asian Pacific American Student Achievement Action Group (APASAAG), an Asian American parent advisory group, sponsored the event in celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
Students used mixed art tools, including coloring, painting and pencil sketching to submit artwork. Nine students at the elementary, middle and high school levels won first-, second- and third-place awards. Four students received honorable mentions. See all the entries here.
The winners were:
1st: Isaac Soles, 11, Spark M. Matsunaga Elementary School (featuring Nathan Adrian, Olympic Swimmer)
2nd: Valerie Shin, 6, Bells Mill Elementary School (featuring Grace Lin, Writer, Illustrator)
3rd: Avani Dounde, 7, Farmland Elementary School (featuring Kalpana Chawla, Astronaut)
Honorable mention: Abigail Hana Lee, 11, College Gardens Elementary School (featuring Vera Wang, Fashion Designer)
1st: Lyla Cho, 11, Tilden Middle School (featuring Chloe Kim, Olympic Snowboarder)
2nd: Clara Frank, 12, North Bethesda Middle School (featuring Patsy Mink, Congresswoman)
3rd: Priscilla Kim, 14, Kingsview Middle School (featuring Yuri Kochiyama, Human Rights Activist)
Eliana Wang, 11, Takoma Park Middle School (featuring Amber Josephine Liu, Singer, Rapper, Songwriter)
1st: Annabelle Sargent, 17, Richard Montgomery High School (featuring Hayley Kioko, Singer-Songwriter)
2nd: Janet Choi, 17, Richard Montgomery High School (featuring Jenny Han, Author)
3rd: Max Shin, 15, Winston Churchill High School (featuring Ken Kang-Joh Jeong, Stand-up Comedian, Actor, Former Physician)
Evelyn Shue, 15, Richard Montgomery High School (featuring Eric S. Yuan, founder of Zoom Video Communications)
Caroline Dinh, 16, Richard Montgomery High School (featuring Chien-Shiung Wu, Physicist)
Military Band Collaborates Remotely with Elementary Students
Members of the District Brass, an ensemble within the United States Air Force Band, recently collaborated remotely with students from Great Seneca Creek, Greencastle and Maryvale elementary schools to perform “How Far I’ll Go” from Disney’s “Moana.” Watch it here.
Clarksburg Student Recognized with Daily Point of Light Award
Rohan Rajesh, a junior at Clarksburg High School and member of the Superintendent’s Leadership Academy, has been awarded the “Daily Point of Light Award” from the Points of Light organization for community service. He has also received the United Nations Ambassador Award for community service, and has been selected as a citizen scientist representing Maryland as part of the Citizen Scientists program for the World Wildlife Fund.
Sherwood Student Creates Helping Hands Club
Sherwood High School sophomore Anna Tovchigrechko has started a Helping Hands Club, an effort she began before COVID-19, but one that has since taken off. Now with 13 members, the club was created to help the vulnerable and isolated people in society, such as the homeless, those who have spent time in prison and the elderly). The club’s first project has been making uplifting handmade cards; so far, more than 85 cards have been sent to the elderly in six area nursing homes. The group can be found on Instagram, @helpinghandsshs