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Kirkwood High School Students Win Video Production and Writing Awards

Students in Kirkwood High School (KHS) Advanced Placement Language and Composition classes created documentaries and submitted the research projects to C-SPAN’s annual national video documentary competition. The competition encourages students to think critically about issues that affect our communities and our nation. This year students in grades 6-12 were asked to create a short (5-6 minute) video documentary on a topic related to the new 2019 competition theme, “What does it mean to be American? Choose a constitutional right, national characteristic, or historic event and explain how it defines the American experience."

C-SPAN received 2,923 documentaries from across the country and announced 150 prize-winning documentaries. KHS Students earned five of those awards:

Third Prize Winners:

Maddie Meyers for “Freedom of the Press: It’s in our DNA”

Ethan Peter for “Separate and Unequal”

Honorable Mention Winners:

Julia Smotkin for "(Dis)enfranchised"

Alexander (A.J.) Wallach for "Vicious Country, Vicious City"

Charlotte Witt for "The People Behind the Percents"

StudentCam is C-SPAN's annual national video documentary competition that encourages students to think critically about issues that affect our communities and our nation. This year students in grades 6-12 were asked to create a short (5-6 minute) video documentary on a topic related to the new 2019 competition theme, What does it mean to be American? Choose a constitutional right, national characteristic, or historic event and explain how it defines the American experience.

According to the StudentCam website, this is the 15th year of the competition, and this year’s entries were all very strong: “We want to recognize that a large percentage of this year's students went well above and beyond the efforts of past participants. As judges, the incredible amount of effort that went into many of the productions was clearly evident. Some of you invested weeks or even months in the planning, researching, filming, and editing your work. There were interviews with professors, lawyers, historians, a wide variety of elected officials, and many other experts. We sincerely enjoyed viewing each and every submission and hearing your perspectives on what being American means to you.”

More information or to view the student documentaries, please visit the StudentCam website.

KHS Junior Wins National Writing Competition

Students in KHS Advanced Placement English classes submitted essays to the Yes! Magazine National Student Writing Competition. Ethan Peter, KHS junior, was named the High School Winner for YES! Magazine’s 2019 Winter student writing competition.

For Yes! Magazine writing competitions, students are invited quarterly to read a selected Yes! Magazine article, then respond with an essay using a writing prompt. For the winter competition, students first read “Two-Thirds of Americans Live in the “Constitution-Free Zone” by Lornett Turnbull.

and responded to one of two writing prompts: “Students had a choice between two writing prompts for this contest on immigration policies at the border and in the “Constitution-free zone,” a 100-mile perimeter from land and sea borders where U.S. Border Patrol can search any vehicle, bus, or vessel without a warrant. They could state their positions on the impact of immigration policies on our country’s security and how we determine who is welcome to live here. Or they could write about a time when someone made an unfair assumption about them, just as Border Patrol agents have made warrantless searches of Greyhound passengers based simply on race and clothing.

From the hundreds of essays written, eight were chosen as winners from student writers across the country who submitted essays to the contest.

 Ethan won in the national high school winter category for his essay entitled “Bus(ted)”. Ethan writes for his school newspaper, The Kirkwood Call, and plays volleyball for his high school and a club team. He hopes to continue to grow as a writer in the future. To read his complete essay, please visit the YES! Magazine website