Pikeville High School has selected its school winner for the 2011 Poetry Out Loud contest. Winner Jared Auton will go on to compete at the next level.
Poetry Out Loud uses a pyramid structure that begins at the classroom level. Winners will advance to the school-wide competition, then to a regional and/or state competition, and ultimately to the National Finals.
The National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation have partnered with state arts agencies of the United States to support Poetry Out Loud, which encourages the nation's youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and recitation. This program helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage.
Recitation and performance are exciting current trends in poetry. There has been a resurgence of poetry as an oral art form, as seen in the slam poetry movement and the immense popularity of hip-hop music. Poetry Out Loud builds on that momentum by inviting the dynamic aspects of slam poetry, spoken word, and theater into the English class.
Each winner at the state level will receive $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington to compete for the national championship. The state winner's school will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books. The first runner-up in each state will receive $100, with $200 for his or her school library. A total of $50,000 in awards and school stipends will be awarded at the National Finals.
The program will continue to grow during the 2010-2011 school year, culminating in the 2011 National Finals in Washington, DC, on April 29, 2011.
Other winners included 1st runner up, Lucas Taylor and 2nd place, Marcus Houston.
Students participating were: Turner Altman, Miranda Webb, Sam Prater, Jared Auton, Conner Pack, Zach Howell, Lucas Taylor, Brice Bailey, McKenzie Gearheart, Marcus Houston, Jessica Casebolt, Mark Branham, Charles Mims, Luke Hays and Hannah Lockhart.