TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott and First Lady Ann Scott invited K-12 students to participate in the 2014 Black History Month art and essay contests. Students, parents, teachers and principals have also been invited to nominate full-time African-American educators in elementary, middle or high schools for the Black History Month Excellence in Education Award.

Governor Scott said, “This month is a great opportunity for Florida students to learn about the significance of Black History to our nation’s fabric. The 2014 Black History Month Contests will provide our students with a chance to enhance their educational experience and encourage them to become better leaders.”

First Lady Ann Scott said, “The Black History Month art and essay contests will allow Florida students the opportunity to express their creativity and learn more about what makes Florida such a unique and special place. I encourage Florida students and teachers to participate. I would also like to thank Ms. Rose Jefferson for being the featured artist for this year’s Black History Month.”

The student contests focus on the theme “Dr. Martin Luther King’s Dream: 50 Years in Action.” Students are asked to respond to how they are influenced and inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech. Information about the contests and Florida’s Black History Month is available on Florida’s Black History Month website, www.FloridaBlackHistory.com.

This year’s Black History Month featured artist is Rose Jefferson. She was born in Alexandria, Louisiana and grew up in Houston, Texas. She pursued her passion for painting and drawing after her mother passed away in 1999. Her artwork has been exhibited mostly in the southeast and she currently resides in Melbourne, Florida.

About the Student Contests
Art Contest for Grades K-3 – The Black History Month art contest is open to all
Florida students in grades K-3, and two winners will be selected.

Essay Contest for Grades 4-12 – The Black History Month essay contest is open to all Florida students in grades 4 through 12. Three winners will be selected: one elementary student (grades 4-5), one middle-school student (grades 6-8), and one high school student (grades 9-12). Winners will receive a four-year Florida College Plan scholarship provided by the Florida Prepaid College Foundation.

About the Excellence in Education Award

Governor Scott’s annual Black History Month Excellence in Education Award Contest is open to all African-American, full time educators in an elementary, middle or high school in Florida. Three winners will be selected: one elementary (K-5) teacher, one middle school (6-8) teacher and one high school (9-12) teacher.

All entry forms and guidelines for the contests can be found at www.FloridaBlackHistory.com.

Contest Entries and Nominations

Student Contests and Educator Nomination forms must be mailed to:

Volunteer Florida
Attention: Black History Month
3800 Esplanade Way
Suite 180
Tallahassee, FL 32311

All entries must be mailed to Volunteer Florida and postmarked on or before January 31, 2014.

For additional information about Florida’s Black History, contests and other related events, please visit www.FloridaBlackHistory.com.