HISD students to perform speeches at annual Martin Luther King Jr. Oratory Competition

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 would Dr. King say to the children of 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 each receive a $100 award.

The finals for the 23rd annual event are scheduled for Friday, Jan. 18, 2019, at Antioch Missionary Baptist Church of Christ (500 Clay St., 77002) from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The 2018-2019 finalists are:

  • Nyla Johnson – Lockhart Elementary School
  • Asia Jefferson – Blackshear Elementary School
  • Chrisette Wigfall – Askew Elementary School
  • Corine Ellis – Law Elementary School
  • Annoria McDuffie – Pleasantville Elementary School
  • Raheem Khokhar– Sutton Elementary School
  • Leik Mire – Windsor Village Elementary School
  • Emmanuel Akukoro– Valley West Elementary School
  • Irmani Garcia– Bastian Elementary School
  • Mya Parnell– Foster Elementary School
  • Beverly Antia– Bell Elementary School
  • Alexa Zelaya – Cornelius Elementary School

Click here to check out last year’s winner, Gregory-Lincoln Elementary School’s Tchanori Kone, and see the other finalists give their speeches.