Heard in the Halls

Heard in the Halls: School Year Wrap-Up 2018-19

teen talent competition
Congratulations are in order for local students who took the stage at the 2019 St. Louis Teen Talent Competition at The Fabulous Fox Theatre. First place went to singer and guitarist Joanna Serenko (pictured), a Kirkwood High School graduating senior, who won an $8,000 college scholarship provided by the Ameren Charitable Trust. Parkway South junior Samanvita Kasthuri won second place and a $6,000 scholarship for her traditional Indian dance. And graduating seniors Oliver Layher (Vianney) and Kryan Walton (Metro Academic & Classical High School) won third for their acrobatic performance.

kirk day school
A story by student Karissa Hsu was selected for publication in The Grannie Annie, a literary magazine that encourages kids to express themselves through writing. Her piece, “The Inheritance of Hope,” is about how her grandmother fled China for Japan during World War II. Karissa’s work was one of 38 chosen from 536 submissions. It also will be published in a paperback book along with other students’ stories.

ladue middle school
Word wizard Sophia ‘Sassy’ Saleeby earned third place in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Regional Spelling Bee and went on to represent her school at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Maryland. Sassy raised the money for her Scripps entrance fee by conducting a raffle and selling beeshaped cookies. (The national contest was so competitive that eight co-champions were named, all between the ages of 12 and 14!)

kirkwood high school
Megan McGhee, who will be a junior in the fall, took first place in the St. Louis Poetry Center’s Beverly Hopkins Memorial Poetry Contest. McGhee won for two works, “Rings” and “Oldest Moon.” Her pieces will be published in an upcoming Poetry Center book. Graduating senior Claire Calhoun received an honorable mention from Missouri Scholars 100, a Missouri Association of Secondary School Principals program that honors graduates with excellent school citizenship records, top grade point averages and high ACT/ SAT scores.

webster groves high school
Marketing students teamed up to organize the 18th annual Jim Schoemehl Run for ALS, which raised more than $18,000 for efforts to fight the neurodegenerative disease. Race participants chose from a 5K, 10K and 1-mile fun run. The students partner with the ALS Association each year to put on the event, which has brought in more than $300,000. A quarter of the proceeds go to the association, and the remainder benefits the family of patient Denis Hart.

Kirkwood artist Mark Borella recently visited third- and fourth-grade students to talk about using art to show kindness. They made his popular Seeds of Happiness, small clay faces decorated with smiles, to give to staff and other students as a way of saying thank you. Borella began making the faces in 2006 for friends dealing with tough times. He talked with the classes about his own experiences as a student and working artist.

shenandoah valley elementary
Sixth-grader Aiden Moon took first place in the Grades 4-8 category of the 2019 Law Day Essay Contest, sponsored by the Missouri Bar Young Lawyers’ Section and Missouri National Education Association. Aiden’s piece, “Speech and Press: The Ancient Significance,” was about the importance of free expression in speech and print. He received his award at a banquet in Jefferson City.

rossman school
Every year, three graduating sixth-graders are recognized for their accomplishments during their time at the school. Anokhi Desai (far left) received the Pauline Marshall Award for Scholarship for having the highest grade point average in the class. Ian Boon took home the Alumni Award for Outstanding Achievement in a Specialty Subject for his efforts in physical education, and Asha Krishnasamy received the Mary B. Rossman Award for Citizenship