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Two schools share academic championship

April 04, 2007|by ERIN CUNNINGHAM

WASHINGTON COUNTY - More than one week after Washington County Public Schools held its academic team championship, a winner has been announced.

And for the first time in recent years, there are two winners: Hancock Middle-Senior High School and Smithsburg High School, according to schools spokeswoman Carol Mowen.

Seven high school teams competed in the March 24 event at Springfield Middle School: Boonsboro, Clear Spring, Hancock Middle-Senior, North Hagerstown, Smithsburg, South Hagerstown and Washington County Technical. Boonsboro, Hancock, North Hagerstown and Smithsburg advanced to the championship round.

Following the event, the 11th academic competition the school system has hosted, Hancock Middle-Senior High School was announced as the winner, school officials said.

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Soon after, a Smithsburg High School team representative said one of the team's answers was incorrectly scored as a wrong answer during the competition.

School officials said there was an error in the judge's key that led to a reduction in Smithsburg's score. Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Instruction Donna Hanlin said last week that school officials were working with representatives from both schools to find a solution to the scoring error.

More than $3,500 in scholarship money was available for competing teams.

Hanlin said that both schools will receive the same amount of scholarship money. That will be $400 for each school, plus the $250 that each team received for competing in the preliminary round, Mowen said.

"Because they are both co-winners, we want them both to celebrate that," Hanlin said.

The scholarship money goes directly to the schools, where a committee determines how to disperse it among graduating seniors who have participated in the academic competition.

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