Two recent Abilene High School graduates can add “national champions” to their portfolios.

Quetzali Mota and Kaitlin Wood, members of the local chapter of Texas Association of Future Educators, captured first place in Children’s Literature K-3 at the 2018 Educators Rising National Conference held June 21-24 in Orlando.

The AHS duo qualified to compete against the nation’s best by winning the statewide TAFE contest in February. At state, Mota and Wood finished ahead of the runner-up team from Laredo United, and the two Texas representatives finished 1-2 again in Florida. Third place went to a team from Cuyahoga Valley, Ohio.

In the competition, students create an original book of children’s literature with illustrations. Mota and Wood submitted their original story in both English and Spanish.

Another 2018 graduate of AHS, Noah Watson, placed third in the nationa in Impromptu Speaking. Students from Virginia and Arizona finished in the top two ahead of Watson, who qualified for nationals in two events. Watson and AHS teammate Israel Yolou also competed in Impromptu Lesson Planning in Florida.

Education and Training/Child Guidance teacher Shea Roberson is sponsor for the Abilene High chapter of TAFE.