By HILLEL ITALIE
AP National Writer
NEW YORK (AP) — The National Endowment for the Arts and the publisher of Poetry Magazine have organized a national poetry reading competition for high school students, with the winner receiving a $20,000 college scholarship.
“There’s a twofold importance in a program like this,” Dana Gioia, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, told The Associated Press in a recent interview.
“One half is education; students come into contact with great poetry and language and learn it by heart. There’s also an equal, and often overlooked practical importance. It will improve the student’s command of language, and will provide much needed training for speaking in public. A student speaking well will do better in the job market and better in life.”
The program, co-sponsored by the NEA and the Chicago-based Poetry Foundation, was officially announced Thursday in Pittsburgh at the annual convention of the National Council of Teachers of English.
(Cross posted at Bud the Teacher)