Bragging rights go to Chesterton High School, which can now boast one of
only 40 Academic All State students in Indiana.
At Wednesday’s meeting of the Duneland School Board, CHS Principal Jim Goetz
was very pleased to introduce senior Liz Benson, who had just returned from
a trip to Indianapolis to be honored for her achievement.
“It’s a good and unique award,” said Benson. “The whole corporation and the
community have seen myself and my classmates through these really critical
A total of 257 students in Indiana was nominated for Academic All State.
There were 90 regional winners, subsequently narrowed to the 40 finalists.
After seven semesters at CHS, Benson is ranked first in her class. She will
attend Harvard University in the fall and plans to study a “biology-related”
“We’re really proud of you and what you mean to the district,”
Superintendent Dirk Baer said.
World Language Department
In other business, CHS German teacher Michele Bartels and her colleagues in
the World Language Department made a presentation to the board on the
department’s summer-abroad program. With her: German teacher Cary Knauff,
French teacher Kayla Vodnoy, Japanese teacher John Sparks, and retired
French teacher Elaine Shumway.
“Generations of Chestertonians have had once-in-a-lifetime experiences,”
Bartels said. “Teachers have tackled the challenge and drudgery of
fundraising. And the teachers have given up part of their summers to
accompany students on their travels.”
“With the advent of the program, whole new parts of the world have been
opened to our students,” Bartels added. “It’s nice that they’re being
recognized for something that doesn’t bring home a trophy but does bring a
great deal of value to the community.”
Each teacher in turn spoke briefly about his or her experiences. Sparks, for
instance, noted that he has traveled to Japan nine times with a total of 119
students, only one of whom has ever been attacked by a monkey.
K-4 Science Fair
at Jackson Elementary
Meanwhile, Jackson Elementary School teacher Bobbi Hall brought nine of her
students, members of the after-school Science Club, to perform a song--a la
Schoolhouse Rock--on the scientific method, to highlight her school’s K-4
That fair has proved hugely popular, with 126 students--or 42 percent of the
student body--participating. Sixteen CHS science students judged the event
and each JES student was presented with a participation ribbon.