Story Archive

Just Another Brick in the Wall

Shania Clifford, 17, was the first female to win a gold medal in the SkillsUSA Ohio masonry competition after beating the next competitor by 72 points. Her instructor, Larry Moore, said the top scores usually vary by only a couple points. “She had the best plumb there,” Moore said. Clifford, from Scioto County, was surprised, though, when she read a Facebook post from the third place competitor announcing he would be competing at the national level. When asked why Clifford was no longer in first place, Ohio Department of Education spokeswoman Brittany Halpin replied by email, “An error was made during the entry of scores into the final score spreadsheet. This error affected results for several students, and resulted in the rankings showing an incorrect winner of the competition.” Halpin added that there were no errors on the judges’ scoring sheets, but Clifford was dropped to third place in the updated scoring. The state group said that while Clifford won’t be allowed to compete nationally, she will be allowed to keep her gold medal. “If they allow me to keep my award, they should allow me to keep my place,” she said. (MS/Columbus Dispatch) ...That’s just plumb wrong.
Original Publication Date: 26 June 2016
This story is in True’s book collections, in Volume 22.

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