- Mission Bay High School sophomore Mariana Merlos won "Best Vocal Solo" and Connor Gilbert won "Best Accompaniment" for his stand-up bass playing with the choir at the Music in the Parks music festival. Mission Bay High School music students competed in the Music in the Parks music festival on May 18, in Anaheim. Symphony Orchestra and Swing Choir both placed first, with Swing Choir earning a “Superior," the highest rating given. MBHS music director JP Balmat and his musicians enjoyed a day in Knott's Berry Farm after the competition.
Pacific Beach Middle
- On May 31, Pacific Beach Middle School eighth-grader Khouri Evans was awarded the 2019 Dr. Shirley Weber Spirit of Service Award by the African American Educators Association recognizing her for outstanding service to the school and community. Evans completed her eighth-grade IB Community Project and two year commitment by raising more than $2,000 to fight blood cancers for the Leukemia Lymphoma Society.
She served a two-year term as secretary for the PB Middle Builders Service Club, where students presented to community members, maintained a school food pantry, designed doggy bags for PAWS, planned service recognition events, and ran the PB Middle BeachFest booth. Logging more than 100 hours of service and earning the Presidential Award for Service, Khouri has maintained a 4.0 GPA, plays the tuba in the concert band, and won second place two years in a row in shotput at the track and field competition.
Barnard Mandarin Magnet Elementary
- Barnard Mandarin Magnet Elementary School’s chess team won first place in their age division at the 2019 National Elementary Championship in Nashville on May 11. Barnard’s four-student chess team finished in three of the top four places in individual standings, including first place. The event, hosted by the United States Chess Federation, is one of the largest youth tournaments in the nation with over 2,000 participants.
Barnard third-grader, Giuseppe M., finished first in individual standings. Third-grader Jayan F. and second graders Nathan C. and Evan M. also had impressive performances that earned their team the first place trophy in the kindergarten to third grade unrated section competition. The students’ grit and determination paid off in the end as the team won by a total of 1.5 points.
- Holocaust survivor Fanny Krasner Lebovits, 96, and students from Kate Sessions Elementary School added a painted ceramic butterfly to the Sessions butterfly wall, a memorial to the Holocaust through the Butterfly Project. Each butterfly represents one child who perished in the Holocaust and honors the survivors. Lebovits visited Kate Sessions Elementary to share her inspirational story of survival through World War II. Only 19 years old when Nazis invaded her home in Liepaja, Latvia, Lebovits lost 79 family members, lived in the Libau ghetto, and survived five concentration camps. Her message of resilience and hope is congruent with Sessions International Baccalureate program.
- The fifth graders at Sessions had a fun week with a luau, skating at Skateworld, pizza party, kickball game against the teachers, participating in a mock trial, and picnicking at Kate Sessions Park. Thank you to Jen Henehan for sponsoring the luau and to Mission Bay Sport Center for donating the Lily Pad.