12 HISD students to compete during MLK Jr. Oratory Competition finals on Jan. 12 

Twelve HISD students will continue the tradition of honoring the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. when they compete Friday in the final round of the Gardere MLK Jr. Oratory Competition.

For more than 20 years, fourth- and fifth-graders from two dozen HISD schools have competed in the annual contest, which challenges students to write and present a short original speech on a subject related to the slain civil rights leader. The topic this year is, “What is your dream for today’s world?”

Watch livestream of competition at Facebook.com/HoustonISD or follow along on Twitter at Twitter.com/HoustonISD

Students are judged on delivery, stage presence and decorum, content interpretation, and memorization at all three levels (school, preliminaries, and finals) of the competition. The first-place prize is $1,000; the second-place prize is $500; and the third-place prize is $300. Other finalists will receive a $100 award.

The finals for the 22nd annual event are scheduled for Friday, Jan. 12, 2018, at Antioch Missionary Baptist Church of Christ (500 Clay St., 77002) from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The 2017-2018 finalists are:

  • Jernee Craig – Whidby Elementary School
  • Kimahni Dew – Burrus Elementary School
  • Jaida Gatlin – Foster Elementary School
  • Natalie Greene – MacGregor Elementary School
  • Armani Holmes – Thompson Elementary School
  • Nhedrick Jabier – Crespo Elementary School
  • Nyla Johnson – Lockhart Elementary School
  • Maryam Khan – Sutton Elementary School
  • Caleb Kiteka – Windsor Village Elementary School
  • Tchanori Kone – Gregory-Lincoln Elementary School
  • Shawn Ward – Pleasantville Elementary School
  • Summer Whitaker – Cornelius Elementary School

Other HISD elementary schools that participated this year include: Anderson, Atherton, Bastian, Blackshear, Golfcrest, Kate Bell, Park Place, Port Houston, Valley West, and Whidby

Click here to check out last year’s winner, Crespo Elementary School’s Nhedrick Jabier (also a finalist this year), and see the other finalists give their speeches.