Kenilworth Sci-Tech School has two more bids for world dominance

Published: Sep. 5, 2015 at 2:55 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 5, 2015 at 6:25 AM CDT
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Queasia Stafford, Kenilworth Sci &Tech student, said she'll bring the third place ribbon she...
Queasia Stafford, Kenilworth Sci &Tech student, said she'll bring the third place ribbon she won this year that qualified her for the international competition as a good luck charm.
Andrew Knott, Kenilworth Sci & Tech student, is learning to speak Turkish, one of the languages...
Andrew Knott, Kenilworth Sci & Tech student, is learning to speak Turkish, one of the languages offered at Kenilworth.

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - You might expect that a student who attends Kenilworth Science and Technology School would be smart, but they also might have incredibly bright ideas.

You see, for the past three years, students from Kenilworth have ascended to competition at an international science fair.

This year, two 8th graders will represent America at the Mostratec Brazilian Science and Technology Fair in October.

Andrew Knott and Queasia (like "cue-asia") Stafford will travel with one parent to a town called Novo Hamburgo in Brazil.

Andrew's project is described like this: "He studied which geometric pattern of cell phone towers gives full cell coverage while deploying the fewest number of towers (answer: a hexagon). His project also theorizes that bees build their bee hive cells in hexagons because of the shape's inherent efficiency."

I couldn't resist it. I called Alissa Gaines, Andrew's mom. She was bursting with pride.

"He's a dream child. He is polite, he's loving. He's always been an honor roll student," said Gaines. "I have four boys, and he's the only one who requires no effort on my part. He loves school, Kenilworth has been a perfect school for him."

Queasia is the third child in a family of three sisters and a brother. Stafford's mom Kimko Jones said her love of science may be traced back to her dad.

"Her father started this. He likes science," said Jones. "He graduated from Alcorn. They were talking one day and she said she liked it. She wanted to concentrate on it and he decided to help her with it. All the rest of us love math."

Queasia's project examines whether fluorogypsum, a byproduct of hydrofluoric acid production, may be a better product to use than limestone in building coastal protection structures.

The LSU Department of Civil Engineering brags on its own webpage about Queasia's project and how it won a Pollution Prevention Award from the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality. LSU also bragged on two professors within the department who consulted with Queasia on her research.

I was curious what families with such smart children do for fun.

"He is a big animal lover, He'll bring in a local animal," said Andrew Knott's mom. "Also he's a gamer, and not that outdoorsy."

"Believe it or not, the best times we have are at the Bluebonnet Library!" said Queasia's mom. "Everybody likes to read, and that's the most fun they have. When we go to the library, everybody's eyes are so wide. They say there's so much to do here!"

Both families are struggling to raise the funds that will send their student scientist and one parent to Brazil.

"I'm a single mom and it's gonna be about $3,000 dollars for both of us to go," Alyssa Gaines said. "This is very short notice, the trip is in October.
We just found out he was accepted, everything has happened in the last week!"

Queasia and her mom have prepared a portfolio on her project, grades and community service.

"We presented a portfolio to our church family members," Queasia said, "I put it on Facebook. The school has done a press release."

"They leave October 24th!" her mother added.

So it's been a whirlwind of excitement since they found out they qualified for the Brazil science fair. If you'd like to help them pay for the trip, contact the school office at Kenilworth.

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