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4/30/2014 7:54:00 AM
Two schools finish high in reading competition
O’Hara School photo
The reading team from O’Hara School in Eugene.
O’Hara School photo
The reading team from O’Hara School in Eugene.

O’Hara Catholic School in Eugene and Sacred Heart Catholic School in Medford were the only Catholic schools in the state to qualify for the highly competitive state championships for Oregon Battle of the Books. Both schools advanced from pool play into bracket play.

O’Hara reached the semi-finals and finished in the top four.  The school competed in a pool of 18 elementary school state finalists, drawn from a field of 298 registered elementary schools across the state. Team members include Ethan Cross, Jay Kartub, Madeline Mahalak, Jena Miko and Jack Thornton, coached by Melinda Miko.

Sacred Heart made through pool play to bracket play, competing in a pool of 15 middle school state finalists, drawn from a field of 202 registered middle schools across the state.  Team members include Abbey Hageman, Renee Stockton, Grace Bryan, Ophelia Sands and Sophie Hetzel, coached by Susan Schweitzer.

Held at Chemeketa Community College in Salem on April 12, 2014, the seventh annual state tournament featured top teams from nine regions with 556 registered schools in three divisions. Each state competitor had already won at their school level and regional competition.  

First place winners were Eugene’s Edgewood Elementary, and Beverly Cleary School (middle school) and Oregon Episcopal School (high school), both in Portland.

Battle of the Books features a 16-book reading list for the elementary and middle school divisions, and 12-book list for the high school division.  Teams of four battle against other teams in a quiz-show format. Points are awarded for correct answers to questions taken from the books on the reading list.

Battle of the Books is a statewide voluntary reading motivation and comprehension program sponsored by the Oregon Association of School Libraries in conjunction with a Library Services and Technology Act grant. Students in 3rd-12th grades, regardless of ability, are exposed to good literature representing a variety of literary styles and viewpoints. The mission is to encourage and recognize students who enjoy reading, broaden reading interests, increase reading comprehension, promote academic excellence, and promote cooperative learning and teamwork among students. The competition is run completely by volunteers.

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