Redmond chess club members take home national fifth-place award

Four chess players from Redmond High School (RHS) took home the fifth-place prize at a national competition last weekend in Nashville, Tenn.

The competition topped off a season where the team also won local and state competitions, bringing home a first-place prize from a statewide competition.

While the four players were not competing as a team from the high school, their points were totaled together at the end of the competition to create a score that was measured against other K-12 competitors at the national U.S. Chess Federation competition.

A disagreement between the parents of the students and administrators at RHS had previously led to a standoff between the groups as the school had said students would not be able to use the RHS name in conjunction with the event.

This initial decision stemmed from administration believing that doing so would mean the chess tournament was a school-ordained event that would require a chaperone from the school.

However, in an email forwarded to the Lake Washington School District’s (LWSD) associate and deputy superintendents, they said they reviewed the case with their risk manager and gave the students the green light to use the school’s name to have their points tallied.

In previous coverage, student and chess competitor Noah Yeo said he hoped they would be able to use the RHS name for the score tally.

“It’s mostly just like a recognition thing, like we want people to know that we’re here and that we’re doing this type of thing,” he told the Reporter. “It would just be cool to go to the national tournament and win some awards as a team.”

Yeo, Daniel He, Samuel He and Anshul Ahluwalia were the four students who competed in the event.

At the time of publication, LWSD had not returned calls and emails seeking comment on its decision.