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Delaware School Students Excel In Statewide '24 Challenge Math' Finals

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WILMINGTON, Del. - Two hundred Delaware school children proved, once again, that math can be fun by competing in the annual 24 Challenge Math Competition held today at Bank One Center on the Wilmington Riverfront.

The tournament is the culmination of the annual 24 Challenge Math Program that helps fourth through eighth-grade pupils sharpen basic skills such as mental math, number sense, critical thinking, problem solving and pattern sensing.

Delaware pupils have been participating in schoolwide competitions since February. This year, more than 40,000 pupils took part in the 24 Challenge Math Program, which has been supported in Delaware by Verizon Foundation since the early 1990's.

The winners of the 2004 tournament finals are:

    Grade 4/5: Judea Rufino, 11, of Manor Park, a pupil at Castle Hills Elementary School in the Colonial School District

    Grade 6: Neekema Agrawal, 12, of Newark, a pupil at Newark Charter School

    Grade 7/8: Richard Kelly, 13, of New Castle, a pupil at George Read Middle School in the Colonial School District

    Platinum Masters: Harika Rayala, 11, of New Castle, a pupil at George Read Middle School in the Colonial School District

Platinum Masters' participants must solve game cards that include exponents, fractions and algebraic expressions.

"The 24 Challenge is a program like no other," said Joshua W. Martin III, president of Verizon Delaware. "The skills that this program provides for students are vitally important to a technology-literate population today, and they will be even more important for those who will be entering the workplace of tomorrow."

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