Book Drive Honoring Local Student Nets 2,000 Donations

Photos courtesy Meredith Swierczynski
Since her death in 2018, the family of Evelyn “Evie” Swierczynski has held an annual book drive for Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles in memory of the Burbank High School student who was rarely seen without a book.

The plan was to go to the post office.
In late fall, Burbank resident Meredith Swierczynski and her family planned to commemorate her daughter, Evelyn, by collecting donated packages of books and bringing them to a storage unit to be organized, as had been done for the past two years.
Evelyn, or “Evie,” was a Burbank High School student and an avid reader before her death, caused by leukemia, on Oct. 30, 2018. Since then, her family has held an annual book drive to collect donations for Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, where the 15-year-old was treated after her diagnosis. Part of that ritual is going to the post office to pick up donations.
This year, the post office called them.
You need to come and pick up the packages — today, a worker said; there isn’t any more space to hold them. About a week into the book drive, the Swierczynskis had received at least 150 packages, according to Meredith. She and her family — which includes her husband, Duane, and son, Parker — spent the day opening boxes and reading notes that had been included in them. Complete strangers sent dozens of books.
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This BHS Teacher Was Just on ‘Jeopardy!’: Who’s Grimshaw?

Photo courtesy Doug Grimshaw
Local economics teacher Doug Grimshaw appeared on “Jeopardy!” this week in an episode that aired just a few days after the death of host Alex Trebek.

Doug Grimshaw said he has been a fan of the hit show “Jeopardy!” since he can remember. This week, he was on it.
The economics teacher at Burbank High School appeared in an episode of the game show aired on Wednesday evening, just three days after longtime host Alex Trebek died of pancreatic cancer at age 80. Grimshaw earned second place in the competition, earning $2,000.
Though he wasn’t able to achieve a win, Grimshaw said by phone that he enjoyed his time on the show and took pride in how he did.
“I thought I would be nervous when the show actually started and we were competing,” he said. “But I actually felt pretty comfortable and I got to give a few responses pretty early in the game and I … got into the rhythm pretty quickly.”

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High School Sports Delayed Until December in CIF’s New Calendar

Photo courtesy Doug Brown
The CIF State office’s revised calendar has a two-season format — fall and spring — that would give each sport at least 90% of a normal season. There will not be any athletic competition until December at the earliest. The first week of football is scheduled for Friday, Jan. 8.

The California Interscholastic Federation released its much-anticipated revised high school athletics calendar for the 2020-21 year, announcing a two-season format scheduled to begin in December.
CIF State, the governing body for prep sports in California, announced its schedule for section playoffs and state tournaments on Monday morning. Soon after, the Southern Section, the largest section in the state with 566 member schools, released a calendar that gives student-athletes an opportunity to play “90% to 100%” of a normal season, according to CIF-SS Commissioner Rob Wigod.
“The reason for [the two-season format] was to help with the overlap of sports and trying to have some separation between two seasons to allow for dual-sport athletes, for coaches that coach more than one sport and for maximizing the utilization of school facilities,” Wigod said in a press conference on Monday.
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Burbank, Burroughs Football Schedules Finalized

Photo courtesy Doug Brown
Burroughs and Burbank high schools’ football programs have finished scheduling for the fall season, which is set to begin in January.

After the CIF Southern Section unveiled its revised high school athletics calendar for the 2020-21 academic year, athletic directors and football coaches scrambled to contact their counterparts in other programs to finalize a schedule.
Fortunately for local coaches, the process was relatively seamless as both Burbank High School and John Burroughs High School locked in their opponents for the upcoming season, which is scheduled to begin Friday, Jan. 8. The COVID-19 pandemic led to the radical departure from traditional sports schedules.
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Burbank Student Earns National Merit Scholarship

Anna Tong

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation last week announced this year’s National Merit $2,500 Scholarship winners, who included a Burbank graduating senior among its 2,500 total recipients.
Anna Tong, who will graduate from Burbank High School, plans to study computer science with help from her scholarship, which is being funded by NMSC.
The 2,500 Merit Scholar designees were chosen from a talent pool of more than 15,000 outstanding finalists in the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program. Scholarship winners are the finalists in each state judged to have the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills and potential for success in rigorous college studies. The number of winners named in each state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the nation’s graduating high school seniors.
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