Southern School Notebook: March 18

  • Mail this page!
  • Delicious
  • 0

Baxter students win app challenge

John Zarate of South Portland and Wil Losereewanich, who are both students at Baxter Academy for Technology and Science in Portland, have won this year’s Congressional App Challenge for Maine’s 1st Congressional District.

The team’s winning submission—an organization app called Flex—can be used to help track the progress of different tasks.

“I’m very impressed with Wil and John’s app—from its concept to the final product,” said U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-Maine, who announced the award. “Writing an app like this takes a lot of technical skill, but it’s also clear that they put a lot of thought into developing a tool that people would want to use.”

Zarate and Losereewanich, who is an exchange student from Bangkok, Thailand, said the idea for the app originated with Baxter Academy’s Flex Fridays, when students are given a day every week to work on a year-long project of their choosing. Many project teams at the school use “scrum boards” to track the status of collective tasks — To Do, In Process, and Done — and who is responsible for each.

Flex was designed to be a digital version of scrum boards posted on the walls at school, Zarate and Losereewanich said. Users can create and assign tasks while moving them from To Do to In Process to Done. The pair had early help in developing the concept from their classmates Connor Bell and Joseph Corwin, and support from their programming teacher Halsted Larsson.

A video of Losereewanich explaining the app on Youtube at

The Maine Technology Institute convened a panel of judges for the competition. The judges praised the app’s simplicity and intuitive user experience, as well its effectiveness in addressing a key need in project management.

Pingree will formally recognize the students at her office and the app will be on display on a monitor at the Capitol. The submission is listed with the other winners at

Dean’s lists

Bates College

Megan Lubetkin, majoring in geology.

Seth Dobieski, majoring in history.

William Cleaves, majoring in English.

Emerson College

Amanda Doughty, of Scarborough

Alexandria Dutton, of South Portland

Andrea Kostovick, of Scarborough

Maine Maritime Academy

Cape Elizabeth: Curtis Guimond, Derek Roberts, Charles Salerno and Elin Sonesson

Scarborough: Catherine Bailey, Joseph Corbeau, Michael Dedian, Matthew Fosler, William Guerette, Jason Hawko, Kyle Lemay, Caroline Martine, Peter Moore, Harry Motter and Benjamin Stone

South Portland: Matthew Beecher, Joseph DiBiase, Andrew Gaynor, Daniel Peabody-Harrington, Jack Scofield and Shawn Shannon

Roger Williams

Cape Elizabeth: Tyler Mercer

Scarborough: Zach Albahary, Justin Reynolds, Haley Carignan, Sydney Martin, Andrew Simons, Luke Erwin and Rachel Harbottle

South Portland: Kristina Salafia

University of Massachusetts Lowell

Tucker Carter, of South Portland, who is majoring in plastics engineering.

St. Lawrence University

Meghan M. Doiron, of Scarborough, majoring in performance and communications arts and psychology.

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Lucas Dvorozniak, of Cape Elizabeth

Anders Jepson, of Scarborough

Kyle Redegeld, of Scarborough

Rochester Institute of Technology

Scarborough: Sarah Kearns, of Scarborough, who is studying in the biochemistry program.

Sorenda Muth, of Scarborough, who is studying in the biomedical sciences program.

Eric Johnson, of Scarborough, who is studying in the chemical engineering program.

Michael Guesev, of Scarborough, who is studying in the economics program.

Alden Porter, of South Portland, who is studying in the economics program.

Mark Rioux, of South Portland, who is studying in the political science program.

Alexander Kyte, of Scarborough, who is studying in the computer science program.

Maria Quartararo, of Scarborough, who is studying in the industrial engineering program.

Kaler open house

An informational meeting and registration for 4-year-old children living in the James O. Kaler school neighborhood will be held 6-7 p.m. Tuesday, March 29, at the school, 65 South Kelsey St., South Portland.