By May 12, 2015 Read More →

Modestan Martin Esho Named a Winner of National Scholastic 180 Program


Today, Martin Esho, a senior at Grace M. Davis High School, was announced as a 2015 winner in the Scholastic 180 Student Awards for achieving tremendous gains in his reading skills through the use of Scholastic blended learning program READ 180®. Now, Martin has his sights set on the future, toward college and career readiness.

Martin’s education and life were disrupted early on when he and his family escaped from a war-torn Iraq in 2007. During this transition, they waited in a refugee camp in Syria where education wasn’t a top priority—staying together and being safe were their main concerns. In 2010, Martin and his family were thankful to receive the news that they would be able to find a new home in the United States. In California, Martin found opportunities but also discovered he was behind in school. Although English would be his third language, Martin found that he was able to learn and communicate in the United States, but still wasn’t doing well in school. It took time for him and his teachers to diagnose that his reading skills were holding him back. Soon after, Martin entered a READ 180 classroom where he began to close the gap between his verbal and reading abilities. Now, he is succeeding and is looking forward to attending community college next year. Martin shared, “I never thought about going to college when I was younger because my family was too busy trying to survive… now I think I can do anything. Anything is possible for me.”

Congratulations Martin on this wonderful achievement!

The original press release is below.

16 Students and 5 Teachers Named National 180 Award Winners for Academic Success 

NEW YORK, NY – May 11, 2015 –Sixteen incredible students and five dedicated teachers in grades 3 through 12 have been named 2015 National 180 Award winners by Scholastic (NASDAQ: SCHL), the global children’s publishing, education and media company. Despite challenges, these students are being recognized for achieving tremendous gains in their reading and mathematics skills through the use of READ 180®, System 44® and MATH 180® while educators using these blended learning programs are thanked for their unwavering support of their students, fostering both personal and academic growth. 

From overcoming language barriers, hearing impairment or a disbelief in their own abilities, to balancing personal challenges ranging from family loss to adapting to a new country, these 16 students managed to persevere and achieve academic success. Thanks to the confidence the 180 Student Award winners have gained from their enhanced skills, the encouragement of their teachers and the personalized support found in the reading and math intervention programs, these students are now setting career goals such as becoming a special education teacher or a doctor. Meet the 2015 180 Student Award winners and read their stories:


Recognized for their passion to ensure students succeed no matter the circumstance, these five teachers have gone above and beyond the call of duty. Students in the classrooms of this year’s 180 Educator Award winners have exhibited remarkable progress in reading and math achievement thanks to their teacher’s dedication and ability to successfully harness the power of READ 180, System 44 and MATH 180. From supporting students through challenging curriculum to extending resources to parents, these teachers have made it their mission to help their students succeed in school and in life. Meet the 2015 180 Educator Award winners and read their stories:


“Each year we are astounded by the nominations and are in awe of the obstacles these students have fearlessly overcome and the lengths these educators go to in order to foster learning,” said Margery Mayer, President, Scholastic Educational Technology and Services. “Today we celebrate not only their journeys to this point but their futures as well, whether that be students aiming for higher education or educators changing the lives of even more students as they enter a READ 180, System 44 or MATH 180 classroom. We are honored to recognize the success of the 2015 180 Award winners.”

A complete list of the 2015 Scholastic 180 Award winners:

180 Student Award Winners for READ 180:

  • Lily Shi, Grade 3, Thomas Jefferson Elementary School, Bethlehem, PA
  • Mariana Garcia, Grade 4,Robbins Elementary School, Robbins NC
  • Kyla Vincson, Grade 5, Hidden Springs Elementary, Moreno Valley, CA
  • Erik Snapp, Grade 7, Enterprise Middle School, West Richland, WA
  • Amy Luna, Grade 8, Hester Junior High School, Franklin Park, IL
  • Katelyn Brothers, Grade 8, West Virginia Children’s Home, Elkins, WV
  • Kimbsia Demosthenes, Grade 9, Oakcrest High School, Mays Landing, NJ
  • Jon Novak, Grade 11, North Olmsted High School, North Olmsted, OH
  • Martin Esho, Grade 12, Grace Davis High School, Modesto, CA 

180 Student Award Winners for System 44:

  • Austin Stevens, Grade 4, Temperance Kutner Elementary School, Fresno, CA
  • Chief Williams, Grade 7, Brooklyn Junior High, Brooklyn Park, MN
  • Oliver Hernandez, Grade 7, A C Davis High School, Yakima, WA
  • Nathaniel Bustillos, Grade 8, SPC Rafael Hernando Middle School, El Paso, TX 

180 Student Award Winners for MATH 180:

  • Emma Wade, Grade 5, Alta Murrieta Elementary School, Murrieta, CA
  • Cameron Gordon, Grade 7, Southeast Middle School, Baton Rouge, LA
  • Celso Gonzales, Grade 8, Dater High School, Cincinnati, OH 

180 Educator Award Winners for READ 180:

  • Delmano Mitchell, Boroughs Molette Elementary, Brunswick, GA
  • Terreca Mincey, Pahokee Middle High School, Pahokee, FL
  • Beverly Smith, Westerly High School, Westerly, RI

 180 Educator Award Winner for System 44:

  • Barbara Figueroa,Ball Elementary School, San Antonio, TX


Educator Award Winner for MATH 180:

  • Joel Leventhal,Webb Middle School, Tampa, FL

The 180 Student Award nominations are carefully reviewed by a Scholastic committee that takes into account not only student growth, but also personal achievements as detailed in their statements and their teacher’s testimonials. When considering 180 Educator Award nominations, the committee takes into account statements from their students and colleagues detailing the impact the nominee has had on a school, classroom or community.

The 180 Student Award Prize:

  • Each 180 Student Award winner will receive $1,200 from Scholastic.
  • The nominating educators of each student winner shall receive free READ 180, System 44 and/or MATH 180 materials worth $1,000 in retail value for their school or district.

The 180 Educator Award Prize:

  • Each 180 Educator Award winner will receive $1,200 from Scholastic, and
  • An all-expense paid trip in June to the Model Schools Conference in Atlanta, GA, the nation’s premier event highlighting the nation’s most rapidly improving schools.
  • The nominating educators of each educator winner shall receive free READ 180, System 44 and/or MATH 180 materials worth $1,000 in retail value for their school or district.

Click here to learn more about READ 180, System 44, and MATH 180.

For additional information about Scholastic, please visit our media room.



About the Author:

Bring on the rain, and a bottle of Wonky & Wry's Honey Braggot Ale. Loves to roast marshmallows over a fire. Enjoys the mix of cigars and whiskey.