DATE:                  March 4, 2013
CONTACT:         Phil Giaramita, Public Affairs and Strategic Communications Officer
PHONE:              434-972-4049
Teams from a Dozen Albemarle County Public Schools Qualify for
Destination ImagiNation’s State Finals Next Month
(ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Virginia) – Eighteen student teams from 12 different Albemarle County public schools have qualified for the state Destination ImagiNation finals, following regional competition held this past weekend at Western Albemarle High School. The teams finished first, second or third among 102 teams from eight school divisions and private and independent schools from Central Virginia.
The state competition will be on Saturday, April 13, at Western Albemarle High School.
Destination ImagiNation is an international organization that delivers educational programming to students from kindergarten through college with a focus on creative and analytical thinking skills, problem-solving and teamwork. Each year, 125,000 students from all 50 states and 30 foreign countries compete at the regional, state and global levels.
This year’s competition includes seven different categories or challenges in which teams vie for first place, plus an instant challenge category. Each challenge tests a team’s abilities in completing projects in either science, fine arts, engineering, transportation, communications, community service or early learning.
Students begin planning for the competition in September and work after schools and on weekends with parent volunteers and advisors to develop their presentations. A panel of judges appraises each team’s presentations and selects the winners who will continue on to the next level of competition.
“The innovation and excitement these students bring to these competitions is extraordinary,” said Carrie Taylor, a physics teacher at Western Albemarle and a member of Destination ImagiNation’s state board. “I’ve been volunteering for nine years, and every year I am impressed with the ability of students to think outside the box in offering creative and effective solutions to the scenarios that are presented to them. Destination ImagiNation is great preparation for the challenges students will face when they graduate, both as college students and in their careers,” Ms. Taylor emphasized.
Nine schools captured first place, including Albemarle High School in the technical challenge. Burley, Walton and Sutherland middle schools joined together to win first place in the science challenge, and Burley and Walton jointly won first place in the structure challenge. Among elementary schools, Brownsville teams placed first in the technical and science challenges; Cale was first in the structure challenge; Murray was first in fine arts; Greer placed first in the improvisational category; and Woodbrook was first in community service.
With each team consisting of between two and seven members, there were 236 Albemarle County Public Schools students who competed in the Destination ImagiNation regional competition.
All teams are responsible for raising the funds to support their projects and their appearances in the regional competition, and for those teams that qualify, in the state and global competitions in April and May.