Academic Achievement Awards 2016

Academic Achievement Awards 2016

As we reach the midpoint of the school year, it’s a great time to recognize and celebrate those individuals making great strides in education, either as learners or educators. It is the hope that this acknowledgement is a springboard to reach for even higher goals and further success.

We invite you to celebrate along with us at the Academic Achievement Awards ceremony of students and staff members selected by each learning community at BHS. There will be a ceremony with each person getting their moment in the spotlight while hearing words to affirm their achievement. We will also feature guest speakers and maybe a few words from student winners.

Thank you!!!

Chaltu Rashid, Commissioner of Achievement


***Apologies for any audio issues during any of the performances or speeches.


2016 Award winners

Compassionate Achiever

A student who earns at least a 3.0 and always helps out their classmates. This student is a good listener, takes the time to interact with others and understands other perspectives. They are inclusive and friendly with all of their classmates, respectful for others, supportive of others, courteous and appreciative of their teachers and classmates.

  • Emily Gentry BIHS
  • Jose Manuel Hernandez AC
  • Na’eem Rom Mack Frazier BIHS
  • Angie Fike CAS
  • Jessica Wahl AC
  • Kimora Ashby BTA
  • Monserrat Garcia Gonzalez NEWCOMER
  • Humberto Marquez-Ibarra AHA
  • Rosie Cox AMPS
  • Guadalupe Wright ISP

A Leader At Heart

A student who may not be in a leadership position, but should be. They are role models for their peers in the classroom because they motivate and inspire other students.

  • Valeria Garcia AC
  • Arrion Peters-Ward AC
  • Rebeca Torres BIHS
  • Mahal Bryant CAS
  • Annie Stonebarger AC
  • Alaunte Keys BTA
  • Derixon Larios Rosales NEWCOMER
  • Marbella Hernandez AHA
  • Kelly Perymon AMPS
  • Isaiah Tapia ISP

Scholar Athlete

A student athlete who balances their commitment to sports and academics successfully, but always has academics as their top priority.

  • Jamir Thomas AHA
  • Xinavane Foreman BIHS
  • Jamiera Ganner CAS
  • Jalen Amos AC
  • Jerrell Gates BTA
  • Barasa Kamateh NEWCOMER
  • Sarah Marlin AHA
  • Brandon Bailey AMPS
  • Psasha Borden ISP

Advancing Leader

A student who has improved their grade by one full GPA point or are now over 3.0. They are proactive and seek help when they need it or take advantage of the help that is already there.

  • Kristian Manning AHA
  • Alex Mendoza-Cordero AC
  • James “Jack” Faller BIHS
  • Antwan Hunt CAS
  • Adriana Maciel Metal AC
  • Daezhanay Daniel BTA
  • Kaila Jenkins AHA
  • Maritza Garcia Alvarado NEWCOMER
  • Melissa Solano Hernandez AMPS
  • Freesia Motley ISP

Community Leader

A student who is active in the community. They are making a positive impact with service projects inside and/or outside of school.

  • Ali Houweidi AMPS
  • Julia Pew BIHS
  • Naomi Pio CAS
  • Emara Shabir AC
  • Mariah Charles BTA
  • Erykah Rodriguez NEWCOMER
  • Elijah Tapia AHA
  • Enrique Baeza AMPS
  • Manal Nasser ISP

Acclaimed Educator

A staff person who has made a positive impact on the lives of students and is passionate about their role in education. They inspire students to reach for loftier goals.

  • Christie Riedell SPECIAL EDUCATION
  • Amanda Moreno BIHS
  • Eddie Estrada CAS
  • Mendel Chernack AC
  • Aaron Ward BTA
  • Daniella Maaze Merschdorf NEWCOMER
  • Devon Brewer AHA
  • Diane Kung AMPS
  • Tiffany Williams ISP

Acclaimed Academic Supporter

A classified staff person who has made a positive impact on the lives of students and is passionate about their role in education.  They inspire students to reach for loftier goals.

  • Erica Johnson BTA

Academic Achievement Awards
Thursday, December 15
Little Theater

Black Student Union presents…”If Black People are Free, We All Get Free”

Black Student Union presents…”If Black People are Free, We All Get Free”

presented in the Little Theater on December 14, 2016

This month’s ASB Speaker Series event, Black Student Union invited three young Black activists in the Bay Area to speak to the students about issues regarding the Black freedom movement and how students and educators, both Black and non-Black, can show up for Black lives.

Blake Simons – Blake is native of the Bay Area and a recent UC Berkeley grad. Blake has been an active member of the Black Student Union at UC Berkeley. Currently he is the co-director of the African American Student Development Office at UC Berkeley. Activism run’s in Blake’s family. Some of his family were members in the Black Panther Party along with the Black Liberation Army.

Alana Banks – Ab is a Bay Area native and recent UC Berkeley grad. Ab has been active in National Panhellenic Council as a member of the Sigma Gamma Rho sorority incorporated. As a Cal student, they represented the Black and Queer communities as an ASUC Senator. Ab is the current co-director of the African American Develop Office at UC Berkeley.

Spencer Pritchard – BHS Student Teacher in training at UC Berkeley School of Education. Co- staff sponsor of BHS BSU and participant in many campaigns at UCB.

Questions addressed:

  • Introductions and background
  • What can Black people do to come closer together and build more trust, more organizations, among other related topics?
  • What can allies do to tangibly support Black organizers?
  • What freedom movements have impacted or inspired you today?
  • Do black people deserve reparations? Why or why not?
  • Where can we go from here in era of Trump and Black Lives Matter?


Holiday Meal 2016 Thank You’s!

Thank you BHS Community!!!

BHS Holiday Meal Photo’s by Mark Coplan


Thank you to everyone who participated in canned food drive, toiletry drive, fundraising, campaign and the Holiday Meal itself. It is a beautiful thing that we open the doors of our public school to any and all community members, no matter their situation, and provide them with a spirited event. I hope that this huge display of empathy doesn’t stop with this event, but rather encourages many more acts of kindness.

Zoey Horowitz, Chief of Service, did an outstanding effort to make the meal a heartwarming experience for the guests that attended and for the people that volunteered. Her parents are to be appreciated for their shopping trips and work in the kitchen. Zoey brought in a new element this year by requesting that a City of Berkeley employee set up a table to discuss city services with guests. Mayor Arreguin even made an appearance to check out the happenings at the Holiday Meal.

  • We have over 290 volunteers who gave over 700 hours of services.
  • We raised over $3,000 to cover expenses and collected at least 12,000 pounds of food.
  • Any leftover food was brought to the Harrison House by long time volunteer, Tom Watts.
  • Our menu was artfully crafted by Sydney Kennedy.
  • Thank you to the BHS Band & Orchestra who provided cheerful holiday music before and during the meal.
  • Also, major shout out to Milton and the Innovators who brought in their positive vibes entertainment to the cafeteria, getting a line of dancers
  • Thank you to Starbuck’s on Solano for their contribution to the meal.
  • Thank you to the Dorothy Day House for contributing toiletries to guests and being a friendly face in the donation area.
  • Thank you to all of our faithful donors who help to make this event a joy to carry out.
  • Appreciation for the Berkeley Times for sharing the aspect of the meal with their readers.
  • Also, shout out to Mark Coplan, who stopped by to take photos, even though we thought he had retired.
  • Thank you to Tucker Andrew and Thomas Besset ,the CAS student film crew, who captured video of the event and helped to produce a short film about the event.
  • Tashi, BHS School Chef, who logged an extra 12 hours in the kitchen this weekend to make sure the food prep was smooth.
  • Genis Family with a special shoutout to Eli Genis who collected over 70 coats for the donation station as part of a bar mitvah project.
  • Thanks to our safety staff for ensuring a secure event and interacting so well with the guests…
  • Travis Dennis, Mark Griffin, Eric Riley,Steve Saunders, and Chris Ewing.
  • Felicia Phillips for helping with issues that popped up and managing the crowds
And our final shout out goes to the guests who provide wisdom during conversations that cause deep reflection upon our own situations at the close of the calendar year. There is definitely a lot to be grateful for these days.

“When I saw her dancing, it brought tears to my eyes. You know, she was once a teenager. And when she was dancing, she was real happy like she was she a kid again with no problems.” – guest making an observation about another guest who was dancing along to the singing group, the Innovators

Her comment was a great reminder about seeing through the exterior appearance and finding the real person inside each one of us…