May 6, 2019 -- Students from Fox Lane High School in Bedford will represent Westchester County at an annual environmental sciences competition and compete against high schools from throughout New York State on May 22 and 23. The New York State Envirothon will be held at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva.

The five students garnered an overall fourth-place finish at the Hudson Valley Regional Envirothon on May 1, and comprised Westchester’s highest scoring team at that competition. Because it was the County’s highest scoring team, the Fox Lane High School team earned the right to represent the County in the state competition.

Of the 25 high school teams who registered for the regional competition at the Taconic Retreat Center in Red Hook, Fox Lane’s Team 9, one of two teams from that high school coached by teacher Paul Frisch, ranked fourth overall. It ranked first among the nine teams from six Westchester County public high schools participating in the regional event. Scarsdale High School’s only competing team came in second among Westchester schools, and Yorktown High School’s Team 12, one of two teams from Yorktown, placed third. As it has for more than a decade, Westchester had more teams competing at this year’s regional Envirothon than any other County. Each competing high school may enter up to two teams consisting of five students plus up to two alternatives and an advisor. Participating counties were Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, Orange, Putnam, Ulster and Westchester. Rockland and Sullivan counties also may participate, but no teams representing those counties registered this year.

Teams from The Mount Academy in Ulster County placed first and third overall and a team from Hudson in Columbia County placed second.

The Westchester County Soil and Water Conservation District and Department of Planning co-sponsored the Hudson Valley Regional Envirothon, and will co-sponsor Fox Lane High School’s participation in the New York State Envirothon.

“Congratulations to the Fox Lane High School team, whose members advance to represent the County in the state finals,” said County Executive George Latimer. “We are very proud of this achievement as well as the extraordinary effort of all our Westchester teams.”

Nine teams from six Westchester high schools participated:

  • Fox Lane High School, Bedford Central School District (two teams)

  • Ossining High School, Village/Town of Ossining (two teams)

  • Scarsdale High School, Village/Town of Scarsdale (one team)

  • Yorktown High School, Town of Yorktown (two teams)

  • John Jay High School, Katonah-Lewisboro School District (one team)

  • Woodlands High School, Town of Greenburgh (one team)

The primary goal of the Envirothon is to encourage students to learn about the natural environment, and become good stewards of natural resources. The competing teams are tested on their knowledge of five environmental topics: soils, land use, aquatic ecology, forestry, wildlife and a changing subtopic which focuses on a relevant environmental issue. As they prepare for the competition, students develop research skills, practice team building and gain an appreciation for consensus decision making. 

Currently, approximately 500,000 students from 45 U.S. states and nine Canadian provinces/territories participate in the competition. They are all vying to compete in the North American Envirothon, which this year will be held at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, North Carolina July 28 - August 2.