Education Update - The GrandI.S. 228 Wins Chess Championships!
Two eighth grade students from I.S. 228 in Brooklyn were named the top U.S. chess players at the National Junior High Chess Championships, the largest and most prestigious student chess tournament in the nation. In the last ceremony in April, 2003, students Aleksandr Pelekhaty and Alex Lenderman shared the first place honors after completing three days of competition involving more than 2,000 top players from 164 schools throughout the United States. Chess-in-the-Schools, which provides free chess instruction to more than 38,000 students in 160 New York City public schools each year, helped send Pelekhaty and Lenderman along with 150 other students to the three day tournament.
In addition to the top individual champions, players from another school, I.S. 318 in Brooklyn, took first place in three separate team categories, with two players from the school, Jeffrey Wang and Jose Sosa, completing the tournament with perfect scores and winning the Individual National Championships in their categories."For the first time ever, New York City has produced the top junior high school chess players in the United States and three national championship teams among players in grades K-8. This is an amazing success for New York City and for the Chess-in-the-Schools program," said Marley J. Kaplan, president and chief executive officer of Chess-in-the-Schools.
During the three-day competition, which is hosted by the United States Chess Federation, sponsor of Education Update's annual Chess Focus, students participate in individual play. Team scores are calculated at the end of the competition by adding the scores of the top four players from each individual school. Teams are ranked by their experience level. "Many of our students have never left New York City, flown on an airplane or slept in a hotel, and the competition in Florida - and visiting Disney World - was a dream come true," said Stephen Herx, vice president of programs for Chess-in-the-Schools. "Through the guidance and encouragement of our instructors and coaches, the success of these outstanding players is a sign that, with dedication and hard work, these great students can accomplish whatever they put their minds to."#
For more information, visit the organization's website at www.chessintheschools.org.