Science Olympiad

Science Olympiad

National Science Olympiad program

The National Science Olympiad program is one of the premiere science competitions in the nation, providing rigorous, standards-based challenges to 6400 teams in 50 states. Students who are looking for a competitive experience can join one of our Varsity or Junior Varsity teams.

District39 has a competitive Varsity team (7-8) and Junior Varsity team (5-8). Led by Michael Huyhn (WJHS), the teams compete at invitational and regional competitions around the metro Chicago area as well as State competition for our Varsity team. Our inaugural season was amazingly successful, with our teams taking home more than 25 medals, including a Gold Medal in Anatomy at the state tournament in Champaign. The success continued in our second year competing with many medals and top-placing teams across a variety of events.

Competition Info

Competitive Olympiad Program

All students are invited to participate on the D39 Olympiad team. We will be competing in Division B for 6th – 9th graders. Since our 5th graders attend the same school as 6th graders, they are allowed to compete in Division B as well.

We anticipate competing with both a Varsity and JV team, each with 15 students at each competition. Families are responsible for arranging their own transportation to and from the competitions. Per Olympiad rules, each team of 15 students must cover and compete in all 23 of the offered Olympiad events.  At this time, we expect the Varsity team to be comprised of WJHS students who are committed to an extended season of Olympiad and a truly competitive experience.

Students interested in being on the Varsity team must complete a Science Olympiad Varsity Application on or before October 1st, 2016.  All Varsity competition students must attend ALL invitational, regional, and state (should we qualify) competitions and compete in 3-4 events per competition. They will be expected to attend team practices as well as prepare for their events and work with their team members outside of school. If the number of students interested in the Varsity competition option exceeds 15, we reserve the right to incorporate a selection process. Students who are not selected for the Varsity team may compete on the JV team if they desire.

Our JV team will be comprised of students from both HMS and WJHS who are interested in gaining Olympiad experience by competing in at least one competition this season based on enrollment. Please be assured we will do everything possible to honor students’ choices while also creating a JV competition team that is well rounded.

The D39 JV competition team is limited to the first 45 HMS and/or WJHS students to register. Fill out this JV form to receive more information.  JV competition students will be asked to attend some additional sessions to prepare for competitions.  The JV competition team students should be available to attend all competitions (or note any conflicts in advance).  Students will need a parent to drive them to and from all competitions (carpools are OK so long as an adult stays on site and remains responsible for the student).  We will also need parent volunteers to assist on competition days as the kids will need to prepare/practice, have snacks/lunch and other issues may arise.  There is a competitive team member fee to cover competition fees and extra necessary resources. Students on the JV and Varsity competition teams should expect to attend practice sessions and events that extend beyond Feb. 5, 2017. 

Please note that participation in the JV Olympiad team will require practice and preparation time outside of the school day.  Parental support aiding these JV team students in their competition preparation is strongly encouraged.  Special note for 5th graders – Olympiad is geared toward 6th-9th graders so it is a challenging and rigorous program.  D39 is one of the few schools allowed to include 5th graders at competition (due to our school model).  Many 5th graders meet with tremendous success and have fantastic experiences but 5th graders may need even more support at home.

We have registered two teams at two local invitationals (practice competitions) as well as the regional National Science Olympiad competition.  See below for schedules.  Based upon our results at the regional competition, we may be asked to compete at the State and even National tournaments.  Please know this is a highly competitive science program and many schools have a long history of excellence in competition.  While our teams performed very well last year and the Varsity team went to State, it would be an unbelievable feat for our program to advance to nationals in its fourth competition year (but not impossible).

We will use the same Varsity team for each competition (except in the event subs are needed).  We may enter a different 15 person JV team for each competition.  Accordingly, as a JV team member, your child is guaranteed to compete in at least one event at one competition, based on coordinator discretion and availability for each event.  We hope to include all interested competitors as much as possible, accommodating preferences as best as we can to have full coverage of all events at all competitions.

2016-2017 Proposed Competition Schedule

Competition team members will participate in one (or more) competitions.

  • December 10, 2016 – Marie Murphy Invitational

  • TBD– Lisle Junior High School Invitational

  • TBD– Grayslake Middle School Invitational

  • March 4, 2017 – Regional Science Olympiad event at Harper College

  • April 29-30, 2017 – State Science Olympiad tournament at University of Illinois

  • Champaign-Urbana (by invitation only)

The competitive Olympiad program seeks to offer all D39 students who choose to experience competition, that chance.  Our goal is not to win at all costs.  At this age, we want kids to enjoy and become inspired by science.  We also want them to receive basic preparation, practice and experience in advance of their high school years at New Trier (which operates a nationally ranked Science Olympiad team). 

Questions: Contact Danielle Kalb @

Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2017 West Corporation. All rights reserved.