Writers in the Schools (WITS) will hold its Space City Grand Slam poetry finals at 3 p.m. on Sunday, April 2, at Discovery Green – where three HISD students are among 10 semi-finalists competing to be on the WITS Meta-Four Houston team.
Six finalists will go on to represent Houston at the 20th annual Brave New Voices International Youth Poetry Slam Festival in the San Francisco Bay Area in July.
HISD students vying to be finalists are Donald Val, Sharpstown High School; Rukmini Kalamangalam, Carnegie Vanguard High School; and Avila Katine Sebastian, Heights High School. The event is free and open to the public.
Students previously participated in five preliminary competitions held throughout Houston since January. The top performers from each preliminary were selected by a panel of judges to participate in the semi-finals and Grand Slam competition. The Grand Slam panel of judges includes HISD Board Member Anne Sung and Houston First Daughter Ashley Turner.
Past team members have gone on to receive college scholarships, internships, and to become creative forces in the Houston poetry scene.
Since 1983, WITS has worked with educators and professional writers to teach students creative writing, providing K-12 students with literary workshops and producing a culture of writers, storytellers, and performers.