Delaware Hayes High School was given the Harold C. Shaw Memorial Outstanding School Award Friday afternoon for the school’s performance during State Science Day.
Deborah Bogard, the science and engineering fair coordinator for the district, said the award is earned by Ohio schools that have 80% of students earn a “Superior” rating at State Science Day.
“This is a challenging award to win as the judging standards at the state level are very demanding,” Bogard said. “Out of hundreds of schools participating, only a handful of schools win this award each year.”
Bogard said six students from Hayes — Brynn McGrail, Caylee Combs, Natalie Hohman, Rena Ouyang, Kasey Wells and Molly Wells — had their projects selected for State Science Day, and all six earned a “Superior” rating.
Bogard added this is the first time the school has won the award.
Jane Kovatch, a biology teacher at Hayes, said she was excited to learn the school had earned the distinction.
“I am thrilled that our students have been recognized with this award as they work so very very hard on their projects for months!” Kovatch said in an email after the award was presented to the school Friday. “This award is a beautiful reminder to students, their families, teachers, and administrators of the accomplishments of these budding young scientists. I am so proud of each and every participant!”
Kovatch said science fairs are important, because they allow students to experience and learn how science works firsthand.
“Students become experts in their topic through research, experimental design, data collection, data analysis, and in forming conclusions based on their findings,” she said. “Students also develop skills in communication through report writing of their findings, creating project display boards, and explaining/defending their work to science fair judges and to the public.”
Kovatch added science fairs have more than just scientific benefits to students.
“The self-esteem of students soars as they go through the process as it takes curiosity, determination, dedication, and sheer grit to stick to the process to the end!” Kovatch said. “Many students are driven to take their experiments to the next level and enter the science fair over and over — each time gaining more expertise in their area of research. Some students make science their career goal as a result of their participation in science fairs.”
The award was presented by Michael Woytek, executive director of The Ohio Academy of Science, to Bogard, Kovatch, Hayes Principal Ric Stranges, and Kasey and Molly Wells.