Portland School Notebook: March 29

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Lyseth, East End math teams excel

The Lyseth and East End elementary school math teams distinguished themselves at the Southern Maine Elementary Math League meet on March 16.

Lyseth and EECS both had students who received first-place awards for the highest individual scores. Lyseth placed fourth and EECS placed fifth for overall team scores.

“Our results were great,” said Lyseth math coach Linda Kirstein. “Fifth-grader Caden Hemond received an individual first place and, had their scores been counted, our alternate team would have been in fifth place. There is a lot of strength on this team.”

Kirstein noted that all the problems the students faced were challenging and “above grade level.” Although not every student won an individual award, some “showed such improved individual performances at the meet” that their performance was an achievement in itself, she said. Also, Kirstein said, the team works well together.

EECS math coach Sarah Griffin said, “Our team had another great SMEML meet. EECS had an individual first-place winner. Additionally, with 32 fifth-grade teams competing, the EECS team came in fifth place overall at the meet. The students worked very hard during the individual rounds and had great teamwork strategies during the team round. We are all so proud of them.”

SMCC student on All-Maine Academic Team

A Southern Maine Community College student has been named to the All-Maine Academic Team for two-year colleges.

Ayoob Mahdi of Portland was among the 14 community college students in Maine who were honored at a Maine Community College System ceremony March 22 in Augusta. The award includes a $500 scholarship.

After working low-paying jobs and struggling to make ends meet, Mahdi decided to continue his education and enroll in SMCC’s Information Technology program. He serves as a mentor to other students, especially those newly arrived in the United States, helping them with the challenges of language, culture and employment.

The All-Maine Academic Team is a program of Phi Theta Kappa, an international honor society for two-year colleges. Students are nominated and selected for the team by their college based on outstanding academic achievement, leadership and service.

Cheverus senior is Amirault scholar

Katelyn Gendron, a senior at Cheverus High School, is a recipient of the 2017 Lila Grace Sullivan Amirault Scholarship. The $4,500 award was recently presented by Bishop Robert P. Deeley 

The scholarship fund, which helps Maine Catholic high school students with college tuition costs, was established in 2013 by the late Patrick Amirault, in memory of his wife. To be eligible for the scholarship, students must be accepted at an accredited college or university and must plan to work while attending college.

Gendron, 17, is a resident of Gorham and a member of St. Anne Parish. She is captain of the Cheverus track team, president of the Latin Club, and is a member of the National Honor Society, National Junior Classical League Latin Honor Society, and Key Club, known for its annual turkey drive, which last year, provided 500 Thanksgiving baskets to area families.

She has also volunteered at the Saint Vincent de Paul Soup Kitchen in Portland, and, since seventh grade, Gendron has spent time each summer visiting the elderly residents of the Barron Center in Portland. She said she learned the importance of service at a young age, while attending Saint Brigid School in Portland, and said that her desire to serve others has grown while at Cheverus.

“I just like to help people out,” Gendron said. “We’re just so privileged to be here and have this opportunity, and I feel like everyone should have the opportunity to eat a meal or just be happy, and if I can help do that, it’s great.”

Gendron has been accepted at and will most likely attend Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, Massachusetts. She plans to major in architectural engineering.

Chef Mark Hannibal, the culinary arts instructor at Portland Arts And Technology High School, has been named the Prostart Chef Educator of the Year.