New Haven Student Goes to MATHCOUNTS National Finals!

March 22, 2010
Contact:           Michelle Wade, (203) 946-8450  Cell – (203) 675-5132
NEW HAVEN – Michael Zuo, an 8th grader at Worthington Hooker Middle School, placed third in the Connecticut State MATHCOUNTS competition on Saturday, March 13th.  This accomplishment qualifies him to compete at the National MATHCOUNTS Competition in Orlando, FL in May.
MATHCOUNTS, founded in 1983, is a national math enrichment and competition program for middle-school students. Each year, more than 7,000 schools nationwide participate in MATHCOUNTS programs and 250,000 middle-school students are exposed to MATHCOUNTS math problems. One aspect of MATHCOUNTS is a competition program in which participating schools select a group of students to compete at a local Chapter Competition in February. The top school teams and individual students advance to a State Competition in March, and the top four students from each state receive an all-expenses paid trip to the Raytheon MATHCOUNTS National Competition, which will be held at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort in Orlando, Florida on May 6-9.
This year, 662 students from 138 Connecticut schools competed at the chapter level. In addition to coming in third out of the entire state competition, Zuo won the live action-action Countdown Round in front of an audience filled with hundreds of people.  This is a fast-paced oral competition in which the top students compete head-to-head to solve math problems.
“This is great news for Michael, and an incredible milestone for the MATHCOUNTS Outreach program! Getting to the National Competition is really hard and this accomplishment shows that with the help of an outstanding teacher and several dedicated coaches, New Haven Public Schools students are able to achieve at the highest levels” said Brian Edwards, Project Coordinator of MATHCOUNTS Foundation.
Four other students from Worthington Hooker qualified for and participated in the State Competition: Elizabeth Bays (captain), Samuel Rosofsky, Simon Doss-Gollin, and Kwang Hyun Chung.  Coaches of the Worthington Hooker MATHCOUNTS Team are Beth Klingher, Ari Berlin, Rachel Ruskin, and Jeff Rosen.  Edgewood Magnet School also had a team of four 8th graders advance to the state level of competition: David Elkin-Ginnetti, Christine Puglisi, Harrison Davis, and Yarden Canaan.
“The district is thrilled for Michael’s accomplishment and the huge strides shown by all 300 middle school students in MATHCOUNTS.  Equally important are the problem solving and critical thinking skills that MATHCOUNTS   promotes.  They are directly aligned with NHPS’ STEM initiative” said Mr. Ken Mathews, NHPS Math Supervisor.
New Haven Public Schools is committed to providing cutting edge STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) programs and curriculum in order to prepare students for further education in these areas.  STEM education provides all students the opportunity to access careers in these fields. This is important because the skills students need to be competitive and successful in the 21st century are based upon these important areas.