BOE Honors Essay Contest Winners

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Winners of the Andrew Stern Memorial Essay Contest were honored by the Board of Education at its most recent meeting. 

Congratulations to East Rockaway Junior-Senior High School sophomore Ezequiel Espinal (high school category), eighth-grader Madeleine Prucha (middle school category) and Centre Avenue School sixth-grade student William Lewald (elementary school category), who shared their winning essays with those in attendance. 

District students are encouraged to participate in the annual contest, which remembers Andrew Stern, an East Rockaway graduate, who was killed during the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. This year’s essay topic was “In the days and weeks following 9/11 we saw America come together as one nation. Lately, it seems like there has been a lot of negativity, and we are divided as a nation. What suggestions do you have to help recreate the unity our country experienced post-9/11?” 

“If you could read some of what these students were saying about what’s happening in the world today, what they see, what they hear from their parents and others around them…they have some really interesting suggestions to get us back to that place. To me, the most striking was so simple: ‘Just be nicer to each other,’” Andrew Stern’s sister Lisa Burch said of the essays.   

To read the students essays, click on the links below:
Ezequiel Espinal
Madeleine Prucha
William Lewald