McPherson Magnet Students Win the C-STEM Robotics Competition at Both the Regional and State Levels

Irvine, CA – May 22, 2018 – Orange Unified is proud to announce that McPherson Magnet School had a team of students - the Flying Spades - who came in first place in both the Regional and State C-STEM Robotics Championships held at University High School on Saturday. The Flying Spades had a combined score of 820/1000 and were the highest scoring team of the day. Results from Saturday’s competition area available online at

Led by McPherson Magnet teachers Patricia Marzolo and Lauri Truong, McPherson students completed a variety of map challenges with their robots utilizing the RoboBlockly coding program. As none of the map challenges are revealed until the championship events begin, students had to wait until they were presented with the challenges to start coding.

The C-STEM (Computing, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) class at McPherson Magnet focuses on integrating computing and robotics into the regular classroom with hands-on, project-based learning. The C-STEM Center, through UC Davis, has developed innovative computing and robotics technologies with C-STEM Studio and RoboBlockly, along with  teaching strategies, textbooks, and courseware including  lesson plans, group computing activities, optional robotics activities, and assessment tools for readily integrating computer programming in C/C++ using Ch (a user-friendly C/C++ interpreter) and robotics into the formal curricula for K-12.

C-STEM is a UC-Approved Educational Preparation Program for Undergraduate Admission for both K-12 and community college students to all UC campuses. Participation in the C-STEM program, C-STEM student individual and team awards, and extracurricular activities are recognized in the UC admissions process as achievements that have explicitly prepared students for college and career. New undergraduate applicants can select C-STEM as a UC Approved Educational Preparation Program in the online UC application.

McPherson is a K-8 STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Magnet School in  Orange Unified School District. For information about McPherson, follow them on Twitter @mcphersonmagnet or visit their website at



The Orange Unified School District educates approximately 26,000 PreK-12th grade students in the Cities of Orange, Villa Park, Anaheim, Garden Grove, Santa Ana, and unincorporated county areas.  In partnership with our community, we provide a safe, equitable, and innovative culture of learning for each scholar to have a competitive EDGE as a leader.