Writing Contest for Maryland Middle School Students


— All Maryland middle school students are invited to enter a statewide writing contest focusing on the themes of peace and social justice.

Sponsored by Anne Arundel Peace Action, the Maryland Peace Action Education Fund, the Benjamin Peace Foundation and Annapolis Friends Meeting, the contest is open to all 7th and 8th grade students enrolled in public or private schools in Maryland and to home school students corresponding to the same grade levels.

This is the 22nd consecutive year the contest has been conducted.

Four cash prizes will be awarded: $350 for first place; $250 for second place; $150 for third place; and $100 for fourth place. The winners will be honored at a special ceremony, although attendance is not required to receive an award.

To enter, students must submit an entry of up to 1,200 words on this topic: “A student group at your school wants to organize a showing of the controversial 1915 movie, The Birth of a Nation, which is considered to be a masterpiece of filming but is racist in content with a sympathetic portrayal of the Ku Klux Klan. The student group claims that they are exercising their First Amendment rights of free speech in seeking to stage the movie. But other students have objected, and the school principal is reluctant to allow the program. You are asked to serve on a committee to work out a solution. What would you advise and why?“

Entries must be accompanied by a separate cover sheet including the student’s name, address and phone number or e-mail address; school’s name, address and phone number; and the name of the teacher sponsor if applicable.

Entries and accompanying materials must be postmarked no later than April 30, 2018 and mailed to Fred B. Benjamin Peace Writing Contest, 310 Riverview Avenue, Annapolis, MD 21403-3328.

Anne Arundel Peace Action and the Maryland Peace Action Education Fund are affiliated with Peace Action, the country’s largest grassroots peace and disarmament organization with approximately 100,000 members nationwide.

For more information, call 410-263-7409 or e-mail mjkeller@att.net.