After clinching the top positions in their respective regional competitions last month, students from Folsom High School and Oak Ridge High School in El Dorado Hills will be heading to the 2024 California Academic Decathlon State Championship in the coming days.

Hosted by the California Academic Decathlon Association, the California Academic Decathlon State Championship takes place in Santa Clara, with this year’s theme being Technology and Humanity, according to a media release from the California Academic Decathlon Association as they gear up for the prestigious event.


The California Academic Decathlon State Championship is an annual high school academic competition that brings together top high schools from all across California. The competition provides high school students the opportunity to participate in an educational forum that fosters a deep respect for knowledge, cooperation, and self-esteem.

Additionally, the competition encourages high school students to develop academic and interpersonal skills that will empower them throughout their postsecondary lives and future careers. Over 650 high school students throughout California will compete in the 2024 California Academic Decathlon State Championship.


Last month, Folsom High School came out on top in the Sacramento County Academic Decathlon. The event hosted a total of 130 decathletes from 11 area schools.

While Folsom advances to next week’s state competition by means of its first place, they were not the only Folsom Cordova Unified School District team to do well in the recent countywide competition. Vista del Lago High School notably finished third in last month’s decathlon.


“We are immensely proud of both schools for their success this year and past years’ successes, which are a testament to the time, dedication, and teamwork of the students and leadership of their teachers,” said Angela Griffin Ankhelyi, Chief Communications & Community Engagement Officer for the Folsom Cordova Unified School District.


Just up the hill in El Dorado Hills, Oak Ridge High School continued its success in the El Dorado County Academic Decathlon. The regional competition placed Oak Ridge amidst intense showdowns between fellow El Dorado County Schools, including El Dorado, Ponderosa, and Union Mine High Schools.

“We are privileged to reside in a community dedicated to the well-being, potential, and success of our students,” said Dr. Ed Manansala, El Dorado County Superintendent of Schools.


The Academic Decathlon was created by Dr. Robert Peterson in 1968 for local schools in Orange County, California, and was expanded nationally in 1981. The Academic Decathlon is a competitive event modeled after the Olympics to stimulate academic honor and achievement.

The Academic Decathlon is designed to include students from all achievement levels. Teams generally consist of nine members, who are divided into three divisions based on a custom-calculated grade point average: Honors (3.8–4.00 GPA), Scholastic (3.20–3.79 GPA), and Varsity (0.00–3.19 GPA).

The Academic Decathlon consists of ten events which include tests in Art, Music, Language and Literature, Mathematics, Economics, Science, and Social Science, the writing of an essay, the delivery of a prepared and an impromptu speech, and an interview. The event cites that it develops students to become “athletes of the mind.”

Folsom High School’s Academic Decathlon, pictured at the 2024 Sacramento County competition.
Oak Ridge High School’s Academic Decathlon team, pictured after their recent championship in the El Dorado County competition.