Coalers earn state academic honor

Photo by Ann Gill
COAL CITY HIGH School had 11 seniors in the class of 2022 named as Illinois State Scholars. Each of the students was recognized during the school’s annual awards night on May 11. Those students earning the state-wide honor are [from left, row one]: Eli Fritz, Lauren Ferrari, Shaela O’Keefe and Alexis Curtis. In row two: Max Tucker, Riley Dehler, Alma Repond, Molly Stiles and Allison Hausman. Not pictured: Shana Kelly and Mackenzie Kraus.


Coal City High School is home to 11 Illinois State Scholars, a distinction bestowed on a select percentage of Illinois high school seniors.

The state scholar program, roughly the top 10 percent of the graduating class, recognizes outstanding academic achievement.

In order to earn the award presented by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission [ISAC,] students must score in the 95th percentile on the ACT or SAT college entrance exam and rank in the top one half of their high school class.

This year more than 17,340 high school students among the class of 2022 join the other outstanding students who have been honored since the designation was first introduced in 1958.

Coal City’s honorees are Alexis Curtis, Riley Dehler, Lauren Ferrari, Eli Fritz, Allison Hausman, Shana Kelly, Mackenzie Kraus, Shaela O’Keefe, Alma Repond, Molly Stiles and Max Tucker.

“In the past two years students and families have face unprecedented difficulties as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic; from financial and personal ordeals to all of the challenges of remote learning. The achievements of these students are a credit to their perseverance and resilience, and to the support and encouragement of their families, principals, teachers, mentors, counselors and others invested in their growth and success,” said ISAC executive director Eric Zarnikow.

In recognition of their academic achievement the photos of all 11 students will be displayed in the hallway of Coal City High School during the 2022-2023 school year.