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A great academic day

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Dear Editor:

Thursday, Dec. 10, was a wonderful day for academics in the Delta County School District.

The morning started with the sixth-eighth grade math competition (Math Counts.) The top mathematicians from around the district competed both individually and as teams. Following several written rounds, the top 10 competitors from both the sixth grade and seventh-eighth grade divisions battled head to head in a grueling, timed, best of three questions stand-off to decide the final rankings. Imagine yourself completing math problems, by hand, in front of a crowd at the Performing Arts Center. What I observed was a group of our students demonstrating poise and and mastery very much beyond their tender years.

After lunch the Delta High School STEM 2 class under the direction of Mr. Magtutu took the stage to present three different proposals on how each would send a scientific payload to 120,000 feet, conduct an experiment and return it safely to terra firma. The groups were scored on budgeting, relevance of the experiment, regulatory compliance, as well as presentation. Again, poise, thoughtfulness, thoroughness were aggregated into performances well beyond their years. Each of us lucky enough to judge the competition could only wish to have had this type of class when we were in school!

Following the competition, one young man indicated that this project was the most fun he ever had in school, to which I thought: Maybe, just maybe, we are going to be okay after all.

I offer my sincere appreciation to the school district and the teachers that take on extra duties to make these type of activities a reality.

Neal Schwieterman
Paonia

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