February 2021 – Twelve Collinsville High School Latin students participated in the Illinois Junior Classical League 2021 North Convention. Due to public health concerns, the event was completely online this year.
“In a normal year, preparation for this convention already requires a great deal of dedication, and with all that’s been happening this year, this group demonstrated a great deal of resiliency as they pushed themselves to stay competitive,” said Magister James Stark.
“Three Latin Club officers–Tyler Morgan, Aiden Kaufman, and Peyton Beeles–adapted to the use of Zoom to run an hour-long recreation of Rome’s Catiline Conspiracy for students from other schools,” Stark continued, “This activity has become a tradition for CHS students, and they were determined to keep it going even if we were all gathering remotely. Students participated in various other events at convention, including certamen competitions, academic talks by guest professors, a workshop on creating ancient Roman graffiti, and Latin Dungeons & Dragons.”
In addition, two CHS graduates volunteered for the convention as SCLers (Senior Classical League members):
- Julia Eversmann (now at University of Illinois) gave up countless hours working with me on the testing committee to ensure that all academic tests could be performed remotely.
- SJ Nowman (now at Concordia University) also devoted a tremendous amount of time serving as the SCL’s Parliamentarian. At the conclusion of the convention, Nowman was elected as Vice President of the Illinois Senior Classical league for the 2021-2022 school year.
Despite a school year altered by a global pandemic, attendees from CHS earned a total of 12 individual competitive awards:
Lower Level Painting – Amber Vargas for her painting of the Vestal Virgins
Lower Level Charts, Maps, and Posters – Olivia Frawley for her reconstruction of the Roman Colosseum in Minecraft
Lower Level Small Models – Elliot Schusky for his Roman libum using ingredients and techniques available to the Romans
Upper Level Sculpture – Alyssa Herman for her Etruscan-style bust of Apollo
Upper Level Stitching – Tyler Morgan for his interpretation of Hannibal Barca’s “aut viam inveniam aut faciam” (“Either I will find a way or I will make one”)
Lower Level Costumes – Donovan Barker for his depiction of the hero Patroclus of the Trojan War
Latin 2 Grammar – Tie between Amber Vargas & Madeline Eversmann
Level 2 Latin Phrases, Mottos, & Quotes – Amber Vargas
Level 2 Latin Literature – Madeline Eversmann
Latin 2 Reading Comprehension – Peyton Beeles
ILJCL 2021 Latin Teacher of the Year
James Stark was named the Illinois Junior Classical League’s 2021 Latin Teacher of the Year. This prestigious award is voted upon by the senior classical league after reviewing the content of nominations from students throughout Illinois. The teacher must be nominated by their own students, and the Illinois Latin student alumni (Senior Classical League members) use the testimonies in the nominations to vote for the recipient.
Previously, in 2017, Magister Stark was named the Ferrand Baker Teacher of the Year by the Illinois Classical Conference. The recipient is nominated and determined by a committee of active Illinois Latin teachers.