Pioneer students shine at computer science competition


Fifty-two students from Ted Emch’s computer science classes at Pioneer High School competed in the Michigan Association for Computer Users in Learning (MACUL) competition at Eastern Michigan University over the weekend.

In the beginner division, Pioneer students took 2nd place, and 4th through 10th places. They placed  5th in the advanced division.

Emch says that’s especially good considering PHS doesn’t have a pipeline to get students into more than one year of computer science, as competing schools do.

“This says that we have kids who recognize the importance of leaning to code and who are willing to work really hard,” said Emch. “Coding is becoming as important as learning to read and write. It also shows that anybody can do it; computer science isn’t just for nerds anymore!”

Pioneer competed against Troy Athens, Detroit Country Day, Kalamazoo Math/Science Center, Midland, and a private academy in Detroit, among others.

PHS Students who placed at the event include Avery Whitaker, Victor Boyse-Peacor, Kenny Chan, Sanelma Heinonen, Nicole Xu, Josephine Sulimin, Noe Barrell, Stone Mathers, Fred (Coble) Ortiz, Masaki Sasaki, Dario Potter, Xuerui Fa, and Taeyoon Kim.





The AAPS District News welcomes thoughtful comments, questions and feedback.

All comments will be screened and moderated.

In order for your comment to be approved:

  • You must use your full name
  • You must not use  profane or offensive language
  • Your comment must be on topic and relevant to the story

Please note: any comment that appears to be spam or attacks an individual will not be approved.


  1. Frankly, I think this quotation from the article is the real story: “PHS doesn’t have a pipeline to get students into more than one year of computer science, as competing schools do.” Congrats to the kids, but why in this day and age is the AAPS curriculum so behind the times?

  2. AAPS is dedicated to infusing more computer programming classes over the coming year along with Project Lead the Way at the middle schools.

  3. Thanks for the response–could you elaborate please? I don’t know what “infusing” classes means (more of the current actual classes scheduled? new computer science options available in all schools and at all grade levels?) nor am I familiar with what Project Lead the Way involves.

  4. Hello Ms. Remen-Wait,
    I’d like to correct my statement in the article here; we now have an AP course which students can take after a first-year course in computer science. This means we are offering two years, with a third course in computer science principles (a more board approach that includes more than just programming) coming on line in two years. We are also implementing a new program called Project Lead the Way which will teach the engineering design cycle in a number of contexts and include a large quantity of technology-based student production.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.