Scanning our district: What’s new in IUSD?


With all the budget news of late, IUSD NewsFlash hasn’t had much time to get to other happenings around the district. So let’s play a little catch-up.

For starters, more than 900 runners and walkers recently trekked through the rolling hills of Northwood during Northwood High’s inaugural “Timberwolf 5K,” which was organized by the school’s athletic booster group to benefit a local nonprofit organization.

Bob King (left), president of the Families Forward board, accepts a check for $7,000 from Northwood High Athletic Booster President Ron Elter.

When all was said and run, participants in the Feb. 20 race raised $7,000 for Families Forward, which recently marked 25 years of helping those in need with food, housing assistance, career coaching, life skills counseling and other vital services.

Meanwhile, Sierra Vista Middle School seems to be overflowing with news.

On March 12, Sierra Vista finished ninth in the Orange County Regional Science Olympiad, winning medals in five events. The S.V. team was coached by science teachers Kelsey Stalter and Kathy Marvin, along with a host of community volunteers who are experts in such fields as flight, engineering and medicine. (We’re told a number of other IUSD schools impressed as well, including Northwood High, which placed second.)

The following Saturday, at the Orange County History Day competition, two Sierra Vista teams coached by Jon Millers were crowned county champions, earning the right to compete at the state level. Students Nikhil Mishra, Yash Gupta, Chris Sun, Kevin Kim and Asad Karamally won for their documentary, “The Transistor: The Building Block of Electronics,” while Adella Guo, Lauren Song and Tiffany Zhang were honored for an exhibit titled, “Exposing a Controversial Innovation: Pesticides.”

Finally, Sierra Vista recently learned that its seventh-graders took first place in the national WordMasters Challenge, which poses complex analogies for students to solve, and S.V.’s eighth-graders tied for first with Rancho San Joaquin Middle School. We’re told that Turtle Rock Elementary School’s sixth-graders also tied for first in their division, and Rancho’s seventh-graders finished in second place.

Nationally, 85 eighth-graders scored a perfect 20 for 20 in the WordMasters Challenge – and 14 of them were from Sierra Vista, according to Principal Lynn Matassarin. To see some sample analogies, click here.