Briggs announces winners of “There Ought to be a Law” student essay contest

HARRISBURG, June 26 – State Rep. Tim Briggs, D-Montgomery, announced the winners of his ninth annual “There Ought to be a Law” essay contest for fifth-graders.

Every year, Briggs hosts the contest, which encourages students to write an essay about a law that would improve their school, community or state. This year’s contest, which drew about 600 entries, had an environmental theme.

I’m always impressed by students’ creativity and the quality of their persuasive essays,” said Briggs, D-Montgomery. “This contest is a great way for students to think about how they can improve their communities, and it’s a good opportunity for me to hear what’s on the minds of my younger constituents.”

The winners and finalists were recognized at the Upper Merion Area School Board and Lower Merion School Board meetings this month.

This year’s contest winners have the opportunity to visit the state Capitol with their families for a tour and to be recognized on the House floor. The winners are:

  • Katie McCullough, from Penn Valley Elementary School, who suggested reducing road salt that pollutes waterways by having the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation use “smart plows” to target salt amounts where needed; and
  • Emma Menke, from Upper Merion Area Middle School, who wrote about combating deforestation by mandating the replanting of a tree or plant when one is removed or facing a fine.

Finalists in the contest were each presented with a Pennsylvania House of Representatives citation by Briggs. The finalists are:

Upper Merion Area Middle School

  • Jasmine Biddy
  • Autumn Hawthorne
  • Reva Segireddy
  • Jordan Swenda
  • Oliver Rosas Vazquez
  • Nathan Uhl
  • Lizzy Cooke
  • Raven Albrecht

Penn Valley Elementary School

  • Rory Douglas
  • Elsa Gauen
  • Clara Leigh
  • Eve Halbert
  • Drew Shapiro
  • Shrikari Ramanathan

Gladwynne Elementary School

  • Augustin Lucq
  • Owen Newman
  • Jasper Conway