What would you buy for your school if you had $10,000 to spend on it?
That may sound like a hypothetical question, but it won’t be for the lucky school that wins the Build a Better School contest.
With the May 9 contest deadline rapidly approaching, the UFT and its partners held an April 29 press event at the Highbridge Green School, in the Bronx, to get the word out so that all interested students will have the chance to participate.
Announced earlier in April, the contest asks middle and high school students to submit three-minute videos explaining what their school needs and how they would use the money to improve it.
The money can be spent on whatever students think will do the most to help their school and fellow students: musical instruments, library books, gym equipment, art supplies and more.
“The purpose of the contest is two-fold,” explained UFT Vice President for Career and Technical Education High Schools Sterling Roberson. “We both want to encourage students to think creatively about how to improve their school communities and learning environments and to offer them a lesson in financial literacy.”
Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña zeroed in on the valuable contributions that students can make with respect to their own education and on the importance of innovation, which she said can come from within schools. She also emphasized the importance of public-private partnerships in the city’s schools.
The contest’s winner will receive $10,000 to make its proposed project a reality. The school community will also receive free professional development. Runners-up from each borough will receive cash prizes and professional development.
Submissions don’t need to be polished, but they should be thoughtful and creative.
The winners will be selected based on their school’s need, the spirit of collaboration demonstrated in their video and their proposed project, the creativity of their project and how their project will help strengthen their school community. Winners will be notified in late May.
The contest is a joint project of the UFT, Mr. G and PIX 11, the Municipal Credit Union, the Department of Education, the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators, the City University of New York and the Daily News.
Submissions are accepted via mail only and should be sent to:
Build a Better School
c/o Municipal Credit Union
22 Cortlandt St., 26th Floor
New York, NY 10007