Sixteen students were named Semifinalists by the National Merit Scholar Program. Those students are: Centennial High School's Rafe Anderson, Noah Rieth, Nicholas Romans and Katie Tidwell; Eagle High School's Spencer Butler, Samuel Decker and Austin Larson; Renaissance High School's Emory Christensen, Zachary Cluff, Trevor Kendrick, Ethan Simison and Lucas Viele; and Rocky Mountain High School's Carson Barningham, Connor Burback, Donald Palmer and Josh Taylor.
Fifteen students from Mountain View High School scored among the top business students nationwide on rigorous exams to test their business knowledge. The exams are part of the school's High School of Business program, a national accelerated business administration program of MBA Research and Curriculum Center. Approximately 8,000 students from across the nation participated in the program during the 2018-2019 school year. Students scored in Principles of Business: Benjamin Blodgett; Business Economics: Faith Spaulding; Principles of Management: Elijah Friedly, Warren Johnson and Preston Papa; Business Strategies: Elijah Friedly, Carson Smith and Warren Johnson; Leadership: Kaylee Oehlerking, Marlee Hamilton, Matthew Fry, Caleb Allen, Joel Huston and Bradford Jackson; and Wealth Management: Caleb Allen.
Eagle High School's boys soccer won the state championship.
Rocky Mountain High School's girls soccer won the state championship.
Renaissance High School senior Jaelahna Coursey was selected as a delegate for the United States Senate Youth Program, only one of two students in Idaho to earn the honor this year. In March, Jaelahna will visit Washington, D.C. and receive a $10,000 college scholarship.
Centennial High School's boys and girls cross country teams and boys swim team earned fall sports academic state championships for achieving the highest cumulative grade point averages in each classification.
Centennial High School's Katie Tidwell was nominated by State Superintendent Ybarra for the U.S. Presidential Scholars program.
Mountain View High School's Sarah Cole was named the IHSAA 5A Star and the Idaho Star for 2019-2020. Sarah will grace the back covers of the 2020-2021 state tournament programs as award winner, and is rewarded with a $1,000 scholarship and $500 for her high school.
Amaia Guerricabeitia is the first Mountain View High School student to earn an associate of arts degree while in high school. She received her degree though Boise State University.
Renaissance High School senior Cole Satterfield was recognized as Volunteer of the Year for his participation in the Meridian Anti-Drug Coalition. Cole served as school liaison with the MADC via his membership in the National Honor Society.
Meridian Academy's Ian Williams earned his associate's degree in applied science from College of Western Idaho while completing his high school diploma. Ian is the first of our academy students to accomplish this feat.
Three West Ada School District teams were recognized by IHSAA in their 2020 Spring Academic State Champions list: Centennial's softball with a 3.678 GPA, Rocky Mountain's girls tennis with 3.949 GPA and Centennial's boys golf with 3.911 GPA.
Nine Eagle High School students earned their associate's degrees from Boise State University while finishing their high school careers. Those students are: Bailee Sailor, Associate of Science; Benjamin Brown, Associate of Science; Brian Ruby, Associate of Science; Elizabeth Vreeland, Associate of Science; Gabriel Weible, Associate of Science; Jennifer Caufield, Associate of Science with a Certificate in Intermediate American Sign Language; Payton Lyons, Associate of Science; Seth Garwood, Associate of Science with a Certificate in Intermediate Spanish; and Tara Schweitzer, Associate of Arts with a Certificate in Elementary American Sign Language.
Eight Rocky Mountain High School students earned their associate's degrees before graduating from high school. Those students are: Alexandra Sousley, Associate of Science with a Certificate in Intermediate Spanish; Ally Davis, Associate of Science; Braxton Bowen, Associate of Science with a Certificate in Intermediate Spanish; Carson Moore, Associate of Science with a Certificate in Elementary Spanish; Jocelyn Hanson, Associate of Science with a Certificate in Intermediate Spanish; Linkin Skinner, Associate of Science with a Certificate in Intermediate Spanish; Remington Russell, Associate of Science; and Riley Jensen, Associate of Science with a Certificate in Elementary Spanish.
Fifty Renaissance High School students earned International Baccalaureate Diplomas this year. The 21 International Baccalaureate Diploma Program graduates are: Sayujya Timilsena, Jaelahna Soleil Allen, Tanner Lehi Pratt, Lucas Edward Viele, Grace Mina Saythavy, Cole Patrick Satterfield, Tylar Elizabeth Hedrick, Andrew Paul Sahagun, Megan Sue Gilbert, Bakir Grbic, Victoria Emily Burns, Kelly Nga-Wai Huang, Lauren Eileen Gross, Noah Warren Healy, Irina Alexanderovna Bazarski, Matthew Scott Lindley, Andrea Teres-Martinez, Holly Janae Kuklenski, Owen Matthew Menard, Rachel Lynn Lucey, and Sydney Grace McNaught. The 29 International Baccalaureate Career Program graduates are: Zachary Bennett Cluff, Matthew Allen Wall, Kaelyn Johanna Harms, Joshua Jason Hessing, Eric Nguyen, William Sonelam Bualapha, Diego Ryoichi Sekiyama-Nava, Sophia Elizabeth Baldrey, Brysan Nicole Earl, Andrew Jonathan Stubban, Kyle McLean Smith, Marinus Howard Uitdewilligen, Elijah Leroy Archuleta, Gavin James Parsons, Aubrie Nicole Levi, Drew David Meisner, Alex Morgan Owsley, Emerson John Puatu, Quinn Michael Osborne, Hana Marie Wilmonen, Nicholas Stone Castro, Matthew Thomas Doering, Wyatt Waltz Gardner, Tairin McKay Wright, Karson Thomas Hinrichs, Sora Marisisgon Xi, Elijah John Hart, Kendrick Raymond Boozel, and Derik Scott Schellenberg.
Seventy-one students from Renaissance High School earned two-year college degrees while still in high school. Congratulations to the following Renaissance seniors: Bailee Anderson, Avery Andrisek, Tavis Bader, Benjamin Bailey, Lauren Broadhead, Aidan Brown, Rhonan Brownfield, Justin Carpenter, Kiah Carter, Bryce Chesley, Emory Christensen, Megan Compton, Jaeden Corbell, Noah Cordery, Emma Cresse, Peter Crockett, Amelia Cron, Selma Cufurovic, Lauren DeRoest, Destinee Ditton, Cindy Do, Madison Dobson, Alex Fong, Miles Frank, Montgomery Frank, Allyson Gamette, Jackson Gardiner, Cassandra Gardner, Nicole Gieser, Robert Gonzalez, Harrison Groom, Fernanda Guzman, Spencer Halle, Lindsay Halverson, Sydney Haun, Jaden Hawkes, Sydney Heyborne, Willow Hill, Hannah Huffman, Riley Jalinski, Roxana Karimi, Veronika Keeton, Trevor Kendrick, Jenilee Koffer, Tia Larson, Shileez Lee, Shylo Lloyd, John Major, Savannah Malan, Hailey McKay, Morgan McMurtrey, Alayna Merrill, Amanda Mitchell, Skyler Mobry, Sorren Mosher, Jayden Nestler, Meckayden Niezgoda, Nolan Olaso, Connor Parrott, Riel Rognon, Allison Scharnhorst, Jeremy Schellenberg, Willow Serafine, Katrina Sims, Mara Smith, Ella Sokolovskiy, Olivia Surjan, Klora Thueson, Milena Tsioma, Makena Walsh, and Darlin Williams.
Many West Ada School District CTE staff were recognized this summer at the Idaho Career Technical Education Reach Conference for their work preparing our students for life after high school. Congratulations to Stephanie Wheeler, Meridian High School business technology teacher, for receiving the Career Technical Educators of Idaho Teacher of the Year award for 2019. Congratulations to Steve Wilder, Meridian High School agricultural sciences teacher, for receiving nominations to participate on the Idaho CTE state staff as a CTE ambassador. Congratulations to Staci Low, director of CTE for West Ada School District, for being awarded the 2019 Career Technical Educations of Idaho Administrator of the Year.
Seven West Ada School District CTE teachers participated in the Idaho Career Technical Education Inspire Cohort the past two years, spending many Saturdays learning and working on projects. Throughout the course, they networked with fellow Limited Occupational Specialists in Idaho and honed their teaching methods to increase their students' understanding of career technical education. Congratulations to Lee Britt, Chuck Deem, Brandy Funk, Renee Lumley, Ariel Wood, Joe Gossi and Bill Hessing for graduating from this program and earning their Idaho Standard Occupational Specialist certification!
Rocky Mountain High School's Erin Tiderman-Gross visited Washington, D.C. this fall in order to receive her Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. These are the highest honors bestowed by the United States government specifically for K-12 science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and computer science teaching. The President may recognize up to 108 exemplary teachers each year.
The Meridian Arts Commission and Meridian Mayor Tammy de Weerd District awarded the district's lead teacher for music and arts, Amy Vaughan, with an Award in the Art for her relentless advocacy for art and artists in the school district.
Heather Bachman, the district's lead teacher for physical education and health, received the Distinguished Service Award from SHAPE Idaho at the group's annual state conference in October 2019.
Pioneer School of the Arts music teacher BriAnna Crook received the 2019 Professional Achievement Award from the National Association for Music Educators for being the first state student president of the Idaho Music Educators Association while in attendance of Boise State University.
Brittany Brings, director of bands at Centennial High School, is a quarterfinalist for the 2020 GRAMMY Music Educator Award.
Jessica Krahn received the 2019 Idaho Council for Exceptional Children Para-Educator Excellence Award.
Mary McPherson Elementary School Principal Shannon Murdoch was one of four educators in Idaho selected for the Pesky Award for Inspirational Teaching by Boise State University's College of Education. The award recognizes K-12 educators making a difference in the lives of students through their passion and caring. Each of the award winners receives $2,000 and their school receives $500.
Eagle High School speech teacher Herby Kojima was recognized nationally as a Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert in the month of November.
Jared Desjarlais was named Professional of the Year by the Idaho Education Technology Association.
Sawtooth Middle School's Julie Hatcher was named a 2020 Fellow by Fund for Teachers. She will participate in the Oxford Teacher Seminar's "The Library and the Academy" and tour historic English libraries.
Last spring, Joplin Elementary Schools fifth-grade robot builders team, the Galaxy Vexxers, won a state award for Elementary Excellence, first place overall in elementary, and the Design Award for best design overall for elementary and middle school teams. They were the first Idaho team to compete at the VEX IQ World Championships hosted in Kentucky.
Ustick Elementary School is one of two schools in Idaho receiving No Kid Hungry's Breakfast After the Bell grant.
Chief Joseph School of the Arts was named a 2019 National Blue Ribbon School.
The renovation of Renaissance High School's second story, auditorium and weight room space received first place in the Idaho Business Review 2019 Idaho Top Projects. To be considered for this compeititon, projects must be built in Idaho, be substantially completed in 2018, and valued at more than $1 million in construction costs. Hummel Architects, Musgrove Engineering and Engineered Structures, Inc. were the district's building partners on this project.
West Ada School District earned the 2019-2020 Meritorious Budget Award from the Association of School Business Officials International for excellent budget presentation. The district has participated in the program for 19 years, a reflection of the district's commitment to fiscal integrity.