Aldine strives to meet the needs of its Gifted and Talented students on a continuous basis outside the school day by providing Academic competitions provide gifted students with opportunities to showcase and hone their skills while participating in appropriate, meaningful activities that appeal to their areas of strength. Participation facilitates the development of individual talents that prepares students for competition in our global society

Academic Decathlon

The United States Academic Decathlon (USAD) is a program that provides high school students an opportunity to experience the challenges of rigorous academic competition through participation in team activities. In addition, the Academic Decathlon involves members of the business/industry as active supporters of a program promoting academic excellence. Long term relationships, developed through joint participation, benefit the students and the community.

The Academic Decathlon program was initiated in California in 1968 by Orange County Academic Decathlon in cooperation with the Orange County Superintendent of Schools. Region contests were held until 1979 when California held the first statewide competition. In 1982, the competition became a national event and the USAD was formed. Texas became a USAD member in 1984 and won the national championship in Los Angeles with a team from J.J.Pearce High School, Richardson Independent School District. Pearce repeated as champions for the next two years. Texas claims 11 national championships.

Region and state contests are held for schools categorized as large, medium and small. Based on a point system, the highest scoring team represents Texas at the national USAD competition. All members of the winning team receive scholarships. Texas provides $150,000 in scholarship money each year. Registration fees and the Texas Education Agency contribute to this scholarship fund. More information about the Texas Academic Decathlon and Pentathlon can be found here.

The Academic Decathlon is designed to include students of three academic levels. Each nine-member team consists of three “A” students, three “B” students, and three “C” students. The Academic Decathlon is the only competition to award “C” student’s scholarships!

Destination Imagination

Destination Imagination strives to be the global leader in teaching the creative process from imagination to innovation.


To develop opportunities that inspire the global community of learners to utilize diverse approaches in applying 21st Century Skills and creativity.

The Destination Imagination program encourages teams of learners to have fun, take risks, focus, and frame challenges while incorporating STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics), the arts, and service learning. Our participants learn patience, flexibility, persistence, ethics, respect for others and their ideas, and the collaborative problem solving process. Teams may showcase their solutions at a tournament.


Destination Imagination, Inc. is a non-profit that helps kids around the world discover their creativity. We create programs that teach the creative process, so kids can solve problems in astonishing ways. Our kids build a lifelong confidence in working together to solve any challenge.

Our organization was incorporated in 1999, when we took over the charter for OM Association, Inc. Since then, our non-profit has impacted more than a million participants. About 125,000 youth make friends and learn the creative process through our programs every year, and 38,000 volunteers support us!

All of our programs are Challenge based, and they teach the creative process. Our goal is to help kids learn to be creative in every aspect of their lives.

Our Challenge program is our most popular offering. Destination Imagination is an international tournament for kids. At the start of the season, teams choose one of seven Challenges. After weeks spent creating and developing their solutions, they go to a local tournament. Top-scoring teams advance to state or country tournaments. The top level of the tournament is our Global Finals—the world’s largest celebration of creativity.

Chess Team

The game of chess has been shown to foster critical and abstract thinking skills in players of all ages. Aldine recognizes the educational value (planning, logic, and analysis) that comes from chess, and encourages all students to take advantage of opportunutues available to them through campus based chess clubs and competitive teams.