Weekly roundup: El Toro students make waves, Tustin’s Dino Dash, and more

Some computer science students from El Toro High School are making waves — and digital ones at that.

Levi Kramer, David Jun, Dylan Werelius, Eunice Cho and Mukund Ummadisetti have developed a smartphone app that allows sports fans and concert-goers to create synchronized crowd waves and light shows in stadiums and arenas.

As the Orange County Register reported this week, the invention is called LightWave, and fans can participate in large choreographed displays simply by scanning a QR code and holding up their phones.

LightWave made its debut during halftime of the school’s home football game last Friday as “Also sprach Zarathustra” — best known from “2001: A Space Odyssey” — blasted out of the stadium’s speakers.

You can watch a clip here:

“It went really well,” Kramer told the Register afterward. “The participation from the students and parents was great. The announcer was announcing it throughout the game, making sure you had the LightWave app downloaded. The cheerleaders participated by holding up posters.”

Here are some of the other stories we’ve been following this week:

  • The Tustin Public Schools Foundation’s annual Dino Dash put local families in the Halloween spirit while raising money for Tustin Unified students. A photo gallery posted on the Orange County Register’s website spotlights some of the spooky-cool costumes from the event, which featured 5 kilometer and 10 kilometer running races, along with a 2K fun run.
  • California’s Multi-Tiered System of Support may seem complicated, but the framework is working — and it’s growing. Academic scores are up, disciplinary measures are down and rates of bullying and harassment have decreased at schools where MTSS has been embraced, according to a briefing with educators and state policymakers.
  • A pediatric COVID-19 vaccine is now available for 5- to 11-year-olds at local doctor’s offices, clinics and pharmacies. But the vaccine isn’t yet required for students on school campuses, and the timetable for the governor’s mandate remains tentative. 
  • The Tustin Unified School District has announced its next superintendent. Pending board approval, Dr. Mark Johnson, who currently leads the Fountain Valley School District, will succeed Dr. Greg Franklin in January.
  • A cultural proficiency plan that addresses race, inequity and inclusion in the Capistrano Unified School District has drawn praise from parents and students, the Capistrano Dispatch reports.
  • Last but not least, an after-school program coordinator from Raymond Elementary School in the Fullerton School District has been honored for her efforts to provide high-quality expanded learning opportunities for students and families.

This is the part where we encourage you to keep up with local education news stories by bookmarking the OCDE Newsroomsubscribing for emailed updates and following us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.