President to Meet Taft High Scholars


Fresh from finishing second in the national finals, the academic decathlon team from Taft High School is heading to Washington to meet with President Clinton next month, officials said.

Ann Joynt, executive director of the United States Academic Decathlon, said Wednesday that Clinton had agreed to a June 24 visit by the top three teams from last month’s national tournament in Phoenix. Joynt notified Taft Coach Michael Wilson, who relayed the news to his nine charges--all of whom are seniors scheduled to graduate a week after the planned visit.

“They’re just jumping up and down,” said Wilson, an English teacher who will accompany the team on its trip.


The team finished second in an agonizingly close contest that saw a team from Texas win the state’s fourth consecutive national title. A team from Arizona placed third.

The event will be one of Wilson’s last as a Taft teacher before taking a two-year leave of absence from the Los Angeles school district. Wilson, who has coached the decathlon team for the past four years, will move to Greece this summer to teach.