Weekly roundup: Students compete in International Chemistry Olympiad, student’s role in MLB game, and more

Chemistry Team USA
Students Yuefei Chen (far left) and Nathan Yihe Ouyang (third from the left) are representing the United States in the International Chemistry Olympiad. (American Chemical Society)

Two students from University High School in Irvine are representing the United States at the International Chemistry Olympiad, which will be hosted in China. 

After a series of local and regional exams, Nathan Yihe Ouyang and Yufei Chen’s scores placed them among the nation’s top 20 high school chemistry students, qualifying them for spots in an intensive study camp organized by the American Chemical Society.

Based on their performances, four students out of the 20 were chosen to represent the country at the International Chemistry Olympiad. Nathan was selected as one of the four team members and Yufei was selected as the first alternative member.

“This is the first time our students have made it to the international level in the Chemistry Olympiad since I have been teaching here,” said University High School science teacher David Knight.

The international olympiad is an annual competition for the world’s most talented chemistry students at the secondary school level. Ninety countries around the world send a team of four students who are tested on their chemistry knowledge and skills in a five-hour laboratory practical exam and a five-hour written theoretical examination that are held on separate days.

The students will be virtually competing from July 10 to July 18.

And here are some of the other education stories we’re tracking this week:

  • More than 2,500 educators from throughout the state gathered in Orange County for the fifth annual California MTSS 2022 Professional Learning Institute, where they learned strategies and interventions to support the academic, behavioral and social-emotional success of all learners.
  • A school shooting survivor shared his story about what he experienced first-hand and what his life was like after that tragic day in January 2011 at the 13th annual Safe Schools Conference, in hopes to help as many people as he can.
  • The beginning of the month marked the one-year anniversary of Lowell Joint School District blazing the way as the first district in the state to transfer from one county to another via a ballot measure.
  • A 17-year-old student from OCDE’s Special Education program used a speech-generating device to serve up some time-honored words to signal the state of a game between the Los Angeles Angels and the Washington Nationals.
  • Anaheim Union High School District students at university and community colleges are graduating from college at higher rates than their peers. Superintendent Michael Masada wrote a commentary piece for EdSource, encouraging K-12 schools and local leaders to shift their focus on college and career preparedness instead of preparing for standardized tests.
  • The Orange County Board of Education will appoint its fifth member following the resignation of Trustee Beckie Gomez. The board plans to interview applicants who qualify during an August 17 meeting.
  • A case involving the stabbing of a Huntington Beach girl after school hours in 2018 could lead to a landmark decision affecting after-school programs throughout California.
  • High school student-athletes in the greater San Jose area will now be screened for heart conditions. This decision follows the 2019 death of a district graduate who died of sudden cardiac arrest in 2019, despite appearing healthy and normal.
  • About 100 veteran teachers from across the state shared their experiences and insights from the classroom during the 2022-23 year. EdSource calls the results intriguing and educators’ concerns unnerving.
  • More than 60 percent of teachers reported their students ending the 2020-21 school year behind where they would be ordinarily — with impacts especially pronounced for younger students.

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.