High School Students Participate In Poetry Out Loud State Competition

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Top placing regional winners will compete at the state competition of Poetry Out Loud on Saturday, March 31 at the Tennessee State Capitol. The competition will begin at noon in the State Senate Chambers.  This event is free and open to the public.

Poetry Out Loud is a national program that encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance, and competition.  In fall and winter 2011, 36 schools participated in classroom and school-wide contests. Winners from these local competitions advanced to the regional events that were held through the month February within the three grand divisions including West, Middle and East Tennessee.

Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest is presented by The National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, in partnership with the Tennessee Arts Commission.

The state champion will receive a total of $1,000 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, DC, to compete for the national championship. The state champion‘s school will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books. The first runner-up will receive $500, with $200 for his or her school library. Poetry Out Loud will award a total of $50,000 in cash and school stipends at the National Finals, including a $20,000 award for the Poetry Out Loud National Champion.

“This year Tom Randles, co-anchor of WSMV Channel 4 will serve as the emcee for the event,” saidNan Zierden, special projects coordinator for the Tennessee Arts Commission. “In addition five judges will evaluate the student’s recitation of their selected poems based off of an established set of criteria. The judges come from around the state are selected based off of their experience and involvement with poetry, drama, English and creative writing.”

The judges this year are: Whitney Jo, managing director of Playhouse on the Square in Memphis; award winning poet, Dr. Marilyn Kallet from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville; Stephanie Pruitt, poet, artist educator and community organizer as well as the poet in residence at the Curb Center for Art, Enterprise and Public Policy; Malcolm Glass retired director of the writing program of the Center for the Creative Arts at Austin Peay State University; and Ethan Castelo, professor of literature and composition at Middle Tennessee State University.

Poetry Out Loud is open to public, private and homeschooled high school students throughout Tennessee. This year eight students will recite their selected poems at the statewide competition including: Summer Awad from Hardin Valley Academy in Knoxville ( teacher John Sides); Abigayle Claflin from Cumberland County High School in Crossville ( teacher Angela Robbins); Greta Hoffman from Cookeville High School in Cookeville (teacher Sharon Cochrane); Sarah Mihealsick from Oak Ridge High School in Oak Ridge (teacher Sylvia Wood); Anita Norman from Arlington High School in Arlington (teacher Anna Terry); Kelsea Tate from Ridgeway High School in Memphis ( teacher Julie Watson); Ashley White from Franklin Classical School in Franklin (teacher Benjamin Crist); and MaryBeth Yancey from Dickson (teacher Ellen Yancey).

To help participants offset costs of travel to the state capitol, parents were able to apply for travel funding assistance. Travel awards were given based on financial need and geographic location.

This year’s program is made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts, Poetry Foundation, Tennessee Arts Commission, and the Clarksville Arts & Heritage Development Council.

For further information on Poetry Out Loud in Tennessee, visit http://www.tn.gov/arts/pol2012/pol2012.html.  For more information on the national Poetry Out Loud contest, visit www.poetryoutloud.com.

For more information about the state competition or to register your school for the upcoming year, contact Nan Zierden, arts education special projects coordinator at Tennessee Arts Commission, 615 532-5934 or nan.zierden@tn.gov.


CHS Receives Environmental Program Recognition

Each year Tennessee schools are challenged to showcase their environmental efforts through the Good Sports Always Recycle program. "Please join us in congratulating this year’s winning schools for their environmental stewardship and recycling leadership among Tennessee’s schools," officials said.   The 2016 Good Sports Always RecycleTM winners are: Abintra Montessori ... (click for more)

Criminal Justice Speaker Series At Chattanooga State Welcomes Ray Krone Thursday Night

Ray Krone, the nation’s 100th Death Row exoneree and co-founder of Witness to Innocence will share his experience of wrongful convictions and discuss his efforts to abolish the death penalty tonight at 6 p.m. The presentation will take place in the Center for Advanced Technology (CAT) building, room C-30, on the main campus of Chattanooga State Community College, 4501 Amnicola ... (click for more)

School Board Chooses Charlotte Firm For Superintendent Search Firm; Lennon, Testerman Want To Keep Kelly

The County School Board on Thursday night voted 5-4 to choose a Charlotte, N.C., search firm to pick a new county school superintendent. Coleman Lew and Associates was selected over McPherson & Jacobson of Omaha. That vote came after board members Kathy Lennon and David Testerman started the session by saying they are very pleased with Interim Supt. Kirk Kelly and would ... (click for more)

East Ridge May Revise Ordinance On Extended Stays; Fire Hall Cost Well Above Projection; Dunkin Donuts, Firehouse Subs Going Into Border Region Sector

A large portion of the East Ridge City Council meeting Thursday night was devoted to the discussion of a proposed amendment to the ordinance previously passed relating to minimum hotel and extended stay hotel requirements. The new recommendations, which the city manager, codes enforcer and city attorney have drafted after meetings with hotel associations, are that a stay can be ... (click for more)

Accountability Doesn't Have To Be A Bad Word

Am I making a difference? Isn’t that the basic question we all ask ourselves, and seek to demonstrate to others?  Ronald Reagan said:  “Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But, the Marines don't have that problem.”   We would argue teachers do not have that problem either.    Educators make a huge difference ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Guess Who Backed Kelly?

Two weeks before the August election where three members of the Hamilton County School Board were angrily replaced, the organizer of what was called “a great way for the (challengers) to raise great money to help them run smart campaigns” made a bold statement. “I'm sure the current board is well-intentioned, but the results are not there," said Paul Brock. "Leadership matters ... (click for more)