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‘Mega Math’ students

What is your favorite way to spend a beautiful, sunny Saturday? How about 14 hours applying problem solving skills and math formulas to a health and education issue?

A BCHS team comprised of seniors and team leaders Megan Anderson and Forrest Elledge, and juniors Summer McCray, Ethan Rivest and Hannah Rodgers, gave up half their weekend on Saturday, March 8 to compete in Moody’s Mega Math Challenge (M3). The Challenge is sponsored by the Moody’s Foundation, a charitable organization established by Moody’s Corporation. Moody’s is committed to supporting education, in particular the study of mathematics, finance and economics.

This year’s problem required students to create a model computing caloric needs based on student attributes. Team members worked together to write a paper detailing student nutritional needs and a school lunch plan which would satisfy the preferences of the competing school lunch program’s major stakeholders.

The students met at BCHS at 6:45 a.m. Saturday morning to await the downloading of the problem. They were supported by family members who brought snacks and meals throughout the day, plus Dr. Dorman Landtroop and Leigh Ann Hays, who facilitated the event at BCHS.

The organizer of the event is the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) headquartered in Philadelphia, an international society comprised of applied and computational mathematicians and computer scientists, as well as other scientists and engineers. The M3 poses a relevant and ambitious applied math problem — this year to thousands of high school students in 29 eastern U.S.

The students did not have a clue what the problem topic would be or what they would be asked to do until 7 a.m. on Challenge day. This is the spirit of the M3 Challenge, a free, Internet-based math competition that will award $115,000 in scholarship prizes this year. Students gathered to research, gather, compute and ultimately solve a practical “real-world” problem in just 14 hours.

Panels of PhD-level applied mathematicians serve as judges in the three rounds of judging. Coaches and teams will be notified in April of the judging results. Teams selected for the top six prizes are required to present their papers at the confirmation (third) judging round in Manhattan to determine final rank-order of those papers.

For further information about the challenge, please visit www.siam.org.

By Leigh Hays
BCHS  math department

Spring watering restrictions

With warmer weather and springtime planting under way, it is important to remember that water conservation is one of the most important strategies to help meet Florida’s water supply needs now and in the future, says the St. Johns River Water Management District.

Watering restrictions are in place throughout the year within the district’s 18-county region, including Baker County, to ensure the efficient use of water for lawn and landscape irrigation.

Coinciding with the return to daylight saving time on March 9, landscape irrigation is allowed up to two days a week before 10 am or after 4 pm.

Landscape irrigation is limited to the following days:

• Wednesday and Saturday for residential landscape irrigation at addresses that end in an odd number or have no address.

• Thursday and Sunday for residential landscape irrigation at addresses that end in an even number.

• Tuesday and Friday for nonresidential landscape irrigation.

In addition, irrigation is limited to 3/4 inch of water per irrigation zone and to no more than one hour per irrigation zone on each day that irrigation occurs.

The restrictions apply to water withdrawn from ground or surface water, from a private well, or from a public or private water utility. Some exceptions apply, such as the use of water from a reclaimed water supply, which is allowed anytime except when a local government restricts the use of reclaimed water.

Landscape irrigation is limited to one day a week during Eastern Standard Time, which resumes November 2.

Stay informed about district programs, projects and issues through social media. The district is on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Through its social media sites, the District posts timely news and information about its work and shares information from other agencies, community groups and stakeholders.

High places for FFA students

The state nursery and landscaping contest was held this past weekend in Apopka at the University of Florida Research Center, and the teams from both Baker County High School and Baker County Middle School turned in high placements.

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Miss BCHS pageant queens crowned at March 1 show

Crowned in the Miss BCHS pageant on March 1 were (from left) Princess Wilnesha Johnson and Miss BCHS Jackie Anderson. They are pictured with outgoing Miss BCHS Whitney Moore, and (right) Duchess Mallory Mobley.

Photo by Jud Johnson

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