LA Students Win California Academic Decathlon: Charter & Traditional Schools in Top 10

Congratulations to LAUSD’s Granada Hills Charter School for winning the California State Academic Decathlon yesterday in Sacramento.  Los Angeles students are proving that there is so much talent in our schools. Congratulations to the other Los Angeles Unified Schools that placed in the top 10: Garfield, Franklin, Marshall and El Camino Real Charter!

They are proving that we don’t have to chose excellence for either charters or traditional. We can expect excellence from both! 

Last year, Granada Hills Charter won the national Academic Decathlon and as the defending national champion, Sunday’s win is preparing them for the national contest happening in Alaska at the end of April.  In 35 years of national competition, California has placed first 22 times and second 13 times. California has won the national title for the last 13 years! 

Even though I attended LAUSD schools my entire life,  I didn’t know much about the Academic Decathlon so I wanted to make sure to share some interesting details. Consider this an option for the kids in your life as they prepare for high school or are in high school.

More About the Competition:                                                                                                  

The Academic Decathlon is a competition modeled after the Olympics to encourage academic achievement and create “athletes of the mind.”  There are over 600 schools that compete. Students train and study a wide variety of subject areas as a team.  Each team is made up of 9 team members called Decathletes. There are 3 “A”  students, 3 “B” students and 3 “C” students.  The Academic Decathlon season involves 4 rounds of competition. The United States Academic Decathlon publishes the curriculum in the Spring. Round 1 is a competition that is not scored and is held in November. Round 2 consists of regional competitions held in February. The winners of Round 2 and some invited teams then compete in Round 3, the State Championship in Sacramento. The top 2 teams from California then compete in the National Academic Decathlon in Alaska.

What Happens During the Decathlon?                                                                                   

The Academic Decathletes take 30 minute multiple choice tests in the subjects of Art, Economics, Music, Language and Literature, Mathematics, Science, and Social Science. The students also compete in speech, interviews and essay writing. The Super Quiz Relay is the final event and is open to the public.

Congratulations students and families! We honor you “athletes of the mind” of Los Angeles! We want all students to be prepared by excellent teachers, work hard and succeed academically like you. We know all students can succeed, be they from charter schools or traditional schools. As adults, it our job to need to make sure they all have what they need to succeed.



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Alma V. Marquez

Alma V. Marquez

Alma V. Marquez is the founder of and is the founder and CEO of Del Sol Group, a communications and public affairs firm focusing on Strategy, Outreach and Leadership in Education, Voter and Civic Engagement. She specializes in parent education, politics and community organizing. She is a proud product of California public schools. She is a graduate of Huntington Park High School in Southeast LA. She also completed her all of credit recovery classes at Maxine Waters Occupational Center in Watts in order to graduate from high school. She attended East LA College and transferred to Occidental College where she earned a Bachelor's degree in English and Comparative Literary Students and Politics. She earned a Master of Arts Degree in Urban Planning at UCLA. Her daughter is a junior in a charter school, chartered by LAUSD. She decided to start the LA Comadre blog because she wanted to create a platform for Latinas and education.

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