Republic students win writing awards, recognized at board meeting

A record number of Republic students in all grade levels have won awards in various writing competitions this year, and many more may still win awards later this summer. Literary specialist Casey Daugherty reported during the Republic School Board meeting on Thursday, April 18, that 268 students, ranging in grades Kindergarten through the 12th grade, had won writing awards.
Among those, four students won Hall of Fame Awards, which indicates they won first place in their category in a competition, but then outscored all of the other first-place winners in that competition. Five students also won Scholastic Key awards, including one gold key award.
Three of the four Hall of Fame Award winners and the Scholastic Gold Key winner were presented during the meeting. First was fifth-grader Gracie Shanks, who won the Hall of Fame in nonfiction for her creative nonfiction entry, “Titanic Narrative.” Gracie is the first fifth-grader in the history of the district to be a Hall of Fame winner.
Asked how it felt to be an award-winning author, Gracie said she was “pretty excited” to win the award, “but now that I’m here, I’m kind of nervous,” drawing laughter from those present. Gracie also added she was honored to be chosen for the Hall of Fame.
The next Hall of Fame winner presented was freshman Samantha Determan, who won the Hall of Fame in nonfiction for a persuasive essay she entered into competition.
The third student presented was sophomore Emily Wheeler, who won the Hall of Fame in long poetry for her long poem, “Thirteen.”
The fourth winner, senior Whitney Hill, was unable to attend the meeting due to a family emergency, but Daugherty announced Whitney had won the Hall of Fame in prose for her entry, “Roses and Lavender.”
Also presented was sophomore Alexis Weatherman, who won the Scholastic Gold Key Award for her entry, “America Dreaming.”
Alexis told the board that the award has “absolutely validated” her as a writer.
“I talk about social and political issues here in America, and beyond in other countries,” she said. “So, seeing that won an award, and that other people see the value in that, really lights a fire in me to keep writing and keep educating myself on these issues, so I can write more and keep educating others.”
The board also met Amelia Wade, a kindergartner. Amelia won second place in her competition with her entry, “Yeti Crab.”
Across the grades, 71 students won awards in kindergarten through second grade, 63 in third through fifth grade, 43 in middle school and 82 in high school.  
Daugherty reported that the district could see more winners as 300 writing entries in a competition are due to be judged and returned to the district this June.
Receptions to celebrate all of the writers who won awards will be held in May. The reception for the high school writers will be held on Thursday, May 2, at the RHS Tiger Auditorium at 4 p.m. For the elementary, two receptions will be held at the Old Town Event Center on Wednesday, May 8. McCulloch, Price and Schofield students will be celebrated from 5-6 p.m., and Sweeny and Lyon students will be celebrated from 7-8 p.m.



Lawrence County Record

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Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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