Photo by James A. McBride
Students from Christ the King in Haddonfield, St. Peter’s in Merchantville, John Paul II in Stratford, and St. Teresa of Runnemede answer questions during the first-ever Academic Olympics sponsored by Camden Catholic High School, Cherry Hill, on Thursday, Dec. 1.
CHERRY HILL — The first academic Olympics ever held at Camden Catholic High School was such a success on Dec. 1, plans are already being made for another one in the spring that is supposed to be even bigger.
This year the Olympics involved four schools: Christ the King in Haddonfield, St. Peter’s in Merchantville, John Paul II in Stratford, and St. Teresa of Runnemede. The best and the brightest from these schools, said Marc Vallone, had expressed interest in Camden Catholic.
“The youngsters answered 100 questions assessing science, math, social studies, and language arts,” said Vallone, assistant director of admissions and advancement at Camden Catholic. “The questions were submitted by our high school students and were designed for everyone to have fun. There were 25 questions in each category.”
“This year there were only four participating schools but next year we’re hoping to have all the grammar schools in the diocese participate and offer a trophy that will travel from winning school to winning school,” said Vallone.
The competition was the idea of the admissions people in the high school who wanted to offer the Olympics to those students with the desire to attend Camden Catholic.
“The students loved the Olympics,” Vallone said. There were nine finalists and those who didn’t make it actually stayed around to cheer on their teammates.
After the test was taken, the students — all eighth-graders — were treated to dinner while the tests were being scored.
Out of the nine, Vallone said, the top scorer received $500 and the runner-up and third place students had their registration fees waived. The six remaining finalists were given school memorabilia such as T-shirts.
May 8 has been set aside for the next academic Olympics.