By Jennifer Osborn
The end of the 2017–18 school year is rapidly approaching, and it’s time to celebrate. Commencement ceremonies for the class of 2018 will take place on Thursday, June 7 at 6 p.m. in Benton Hart Stadium on campus. More than 500 graduates will cross the stage and accept their diplomas. Tickets are required for admission; a limited number are provided to each graduate.
There are plenty of activities leading up to graduation day. A tradition at Helix is “Signing Day”, but this event isn’t just for star athletes committing to play for a university. All Helix students who have committed to four-year universities are recognized for their accomplishments, then they sign a certificate on stage in the Performing Arts Center in front of family and friends. Almost 90 percent of Helix students report plans to attend college following high school, and half of those plan to attend a four-year institution. More than 350 students were accepted to four-year universities, and more than 175 participated in this year’s Signing Day event. According research, education after high school is a critical part of a successful future. College graduates have more opportunities than those who choose not to pursue their education past high school. In fact, according to Georgetown’s Center on Education and Workforce, college graduates are expected to make 84 percent more over their lifetimes than high school graduates.
We wish the class of 2018 all the best as they celebrate their last days of high school!
Highlander Open Golf Tournament
The Helix High Foundation, a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization, is hosting its annual golf tournament fundraiser on Friday, June 8 at Carlton Oaks Golf Course. Proceeds from this event will help to provide financial assistance for graduating students. Since its inception, the tournament has raised more than $41,000 for student scholarships. If you’d like to play or be a tournament sponsor, check out the Foundation website at bit.ly/2IZUJXF.
CUE Rockstar Conference
The CUE Rockstar Conference for educators will take place on the Helix Campus on June 20 and 21. The conference features hands-on learning and leadership for all levels of educators. For more information, visit cue.org/rockstar.
Science department aquaponics system
Helix received generous donations and assistance from Eco-Life Organization and the River Park Foundation for an aquaponics system that is currently set up on campus. Oceanography students in teacher Jeff Kepper’s class take care of six tilapia fish and grow native plants in the greenhouse. An aquaponics system uses the waste from fish to fertilize plants. There is no need for soil since the plants’ roots are immersed in water. It is the hope that future Helix classes can benefit from the greenhouse and the aquaponics system.
Educational Results Partnership Honor Roll
Helix was chosen by Educational Results Partnership (ERP) and the Campaign for Business and Education Excellence (CBEE) as a 2017–18 California Honor Roll recipient. The California Honor Roll is part of a national effort known for its extensive and rigorous analysis of student achievement in public schools. Helix stood above other schools in California because of its success in getting students to grade level achievement and beyond. The Honor Roll recognized schools for demonstrating consistently high levels of student academic achievement, improvement in achievement over time, and reduction in achievement gaps.
The Colorguard took first place at the Winter Guard Association of Southern California Marching Band Open Series State Championship.
The Speech and Debate Team took 11th place at the California High School Speech Association State Championships, out of more than 150 participating schools. Individual accomplishments include: Mahamed Abdulahi – semifinalist in Original Oratory; Lainie Alfaro, semifinalist in Thematic Interpretation; Eva Anderson, second place in Humorous Interpretation; Luke Babbitt, second place in Thematic Interpretation; Maddie Denison, fifth place in Impromptu Speaking; John Garcia/Chase Osborn, semifinalists in Duo Interpretation; Shane Robles, semifinalist in Thematic Interpretation; and Sophia Rogers, semifinalist in Thematic Interpretation.
Students from the Architecture, Construction, and Engineering (ACE) program brought home $13,500 in scholarships at the annual banquet. The group’s project featured a remodel of the Helix campus, which included a new gym concept, an amphitheater and a student lounge. They designed the elements, then built a realistic model that was presented at the banquet. Scholarship recipients include: Ethan Henry ($1500 scholarship); Anderson Lam ($5000 scholarship); Robert Williams ($2000 scholarship); Andre Carrasco ($3000 scholarship); David Nguyen ($1000 scholarship); and Zeus Lefort ($1000 scholarship).
Student Landon Delgadillo received a $35,000 Fowler’s Scholarship from SDSU’s School of Business.
— Jennifer Osborn writes on behalf of Helix Charter High School.