Como students and their History Day research projects have advanced from St. Paul regional competition, to State History Day, and now to the National History Day Finals.
Kai Sackreiter, Soren Sackreiter, Alice Wagner-Hemstad, and Zach Bollman advanced to nationals in the group website category for their elaborate and topical project “For the Love of Learning: MECC and Communication Through Educational Technology.”
Taylor Fairbanks qualified in the individual exhibit category for her well-researched and insightful digital display of “A Fight For the People’s Land” which examines and chronicles the formation of the White Earth Land Recovery Project.
Only the top two entries in each category advance from state competition to National History Day. With five categories, that means only 10 projects from Minnesota qualify for nationals. Remarkably, 20 percent of Minnesota’s high school History Day projects are coming from Como.
Paw Wah, Gay Nee Thaw, and Kabao Xiong also qualified for state competition in the group documentary category. Their informative and skillfully produced 10-minute film “The Stonewall Riots” received an honorable mention award.
National History Day is traditionally held at the University of Maryland in the summer. However, because of the pandemic, nationals will be virtual for the second year in a row.
While Como’s students will unfortunately miss the in-person excitement of the event and summer travel to the east coast, their stellar research, organization, and final products continue to inform and impact others while earning elite recognition.
Teacher of the Year semifinalist
English teacher Kathy Romero was one of 25 semifinalists for Minnesota Teacher of the Year.
Romero spent over 30 years in business before teaching. She’s currently in her 14th year as an educator with eight years in St. Paul Public Schools (SPPS). She taught five years of middle school at Murray before joining Como’s staff in 2018.
Romero deflected praise and viewed her nomination as acknowledgement of hard-working educators in the Como community.
“There cannot be individual success in our business,” Romero said. “I am honored to be a part of our passionate group of educators that show up every day for our amazing students. I am sincerely and deeply humbled by the recognition, and grateful for the opportunity to represent Como.”
When discussing the year of distance learning during the pandemic, Romero said it reinforced that “education is a relationship business.”
“Relationships have been the primary tool in attempting to bridge the gap for our disenfranchised students to gain access to the skills needed for independence. The pandemic has significantly weakened our tool belt. With that said, we have witnessed and experienced extreme examples of resilience! And through this we have learned, or been reminded, of the power of our SPPS students.”
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