Tag Archives: King High School

‘King High Remembers’ To Be Showcased In Crowdfunded Documentary

Our schools have long been known for their creative learning methods and outstanding achievements and a documentary funding campaign hopes to garner Martin Luther King High School national attention by showcasing the school’s unique take on lifelong learning through an annual event called “King High Remembers.”

King High School, located in the Orangecrest neighborhood of Riverside, brings together hundreds of military veterans and high school history students each year as part of “King High Remembers.”  This phenomenal event provides a rare opportunity for veterans to share their experiences and help preserve history by granting students a glimpse of the past.

Insert local filmmakers and documentary enthusiasts:  Longtime friends Michelle Opitz and Brandon Krajewski have always wanted to join production forces.  Both Opitz and Krajewski have family members and close friends who are veterans, thus the concept of King High Remembers struck a chord.  Upon learning of the King High Remembers program, the two friends decided to create a documentary in hopes of giving the rest of the region, state and nation more than just a “behind-the-scenes” look.  The documentary intends to let viewers across the country know that not only does the younger generation have an interest and hunger for veterans’ stories, but they want to actively participate and be a part of veterans’ lives.

From its initial conceptualization, to the recruitment of veterans and students, the story invites viewers to see the impact this program is making on the lives of its participants. The film profiles John Corona as he prepares for the annual history project and the amount of effort it requires to sustain interest in KHR both from sponsors and the community. The film also profiles several military veterans and students who are being introduced to the program for the first time as well as those who have repeatedly participated.

In response to what the project means them, the filmmakers said:

“This is a very, very cool event and the minute we finished filming the actual event, we knew we had found something special. We both have veterans in our families as well as friends who have recently been discharged and have met so many great veterans with exciting, sad and beautiful stories to share about their experience. We really want to share what King High School is doing with everyone we can in the hopes that it will inspire other archiving projects throughout the country.”

With over 25 hours of footage to reduce to 40 minutes, the two filmmakers have their work cut out for them.  As with many projects, the main obstacle in reaching final production and distribution is raising funds. Opitz and Krajewski have sought help from the community to raise these funds.

Riverside  is a city that honors and celebrates the veterans and heroes who sacrificed themselves for the greater good. This documentary provides an opportunity for all Riversiders as well as people throughout the country to enjoy the wonderful work of King High School in remembering and embracing history through those who made the selfless choice to serve and protect us all.

To learn more about the project and view the funding campaign, visit their Indiegogo page here.

Riverside High Schools Triumph in “Court”

Competing against 26 high schools across the county, Riverside’s King High School found themselves facing off against Poly High for first place in the 30th annual Riverside County Mock Trial competition on Saturday, March 2.

Ultimately Riverside’s Poly defeated King High School in the final round on a traffic hit-and-run case held at the Riverside Historic Courthouse. Poly now advances to the California State Mock Trial Competition, to be held in Riverside on March 22 through 24.

According to the Press-Enterprise, this year’s case, People v. Vega, involved a non-fatal traffic accident, in which the defendant, portrayed by the Riverside Poly team is charged with a felony hit-and-run stemming from an accident.

Photo by Dave Baumann, PE

“In the prosecution, portrayed by King, the victim, a bicyclist, was hit by a motorist and injured. The defendant argued that she was not the driver of the vehicle and that instead, her friend, who has the habit of running stop lights, was driving.

The case worked with the reliability of witnesses and whether the defendant was properly given her Miranda rights.

At the end of the trial, Federal District Judge Virginia Philips ruled in favor of the defendant.

‘Great job,’ she said. ‘I’m just so impressed with everyone — the witnesses, my wonderful clerk, the bailiff. Well done; terrific job.’

Later at the awards ceremony, the high schools were presented with medals and plaques. Poly’s win brought the team to its feet amid cheers from the family members and supporters in the courtroom audience. The team also received a $1,000 check from the Riverside County Bar Association.”

The accomplishment of two Riverside high schools to achieve this level in an academic competition demonstrates both student and faculty commitment to providing innovative learning experiences to our students.

To read more on the competition, view the full Press-Enterprise article here.

King HS Odyssey of the Mind Team Earns Top Honors

The Odyssey of the Mind team from Martin Luther King High School earned top honors at both the Regional and State tournaments held in March and now is headed to the World Finals next month and recently earned a $7,500 grant from the National Science Foundation to help cover the cost of their trip.

Odyssey of the Mind is an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for students from kindergarten through college. Team members apply their creativity to solve problems that range from building mechanical devices to presenting their own interpretation of literary classics. They then bring their solutions to competition on the local, state, and World level. Thousands of teams from throughout the U.S. and from about 25 other countries participate in the program.

The team, composed of 9th graders Hannah Larsen, Zachary Larsen, Hannah Johnson, Amber Rivas, Bailey Figurate, Kitt Roberts, and senior Christ’Ann McKinney, won first place in the Oooh-Motional Vehicle challenge at the regional competition, earning the highest style score from all of the state’s regional competitions. At the state competition, the team placed first in style, and second for their play, earning a trip to the World Finals. There they will join 800+ teams from 26 countries for the international competition. Coaches for the team are Dr. Lynn Larsen of Brandman University and Dr. Paul Larsen of UC Riverside.

The team wrote an original script and created their own sets, costumes, props, and a vehicle for their award-winning play. They also had to solve a challenge on the spot for judges at each tournament. Their sets included creative 3-D elements, and their team-created vehicle was required to travel forwards and backwards while displaying different emotions that tied into the play. They also learned acting techniques and gained skills with using many different tools and artistic elements during the creation of sets, props, and costumes. Team members were lauded by judges and audience members for their outstanding performance and sets.

The team is now busy fundraising for their trip and making improvements to their play, scenery, vehicle, and costumes based on judges’ feedback at the state tournament. They are proud to once again be representing RUSD at this prestigious competition and wish to express their appreciation to the Riverside Education Enrichment Foundation, King Principal Darel Hansen, King Assistant Principals Rebecca Brown and Michael Rhodes, and their parents for all of their support and enthusiasm.

The use of creativity and problem solving by King High School’s Odyssey of the Mind team and many others throughout Riverside schools reflects the qualities Riverside is most proud of as the City of Arts & Innovation. 

Article reproduced from Riverside Unified School District, click here to view.