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Earlier this year, the National Charter Schools Institute launched the “2018 Michigan Charter Schools Essay Contest”, asking charter school students from across the state to share stories of their personal heroes. Over 300 students submitted essays, and four K12-powered students swept the titles for first and second places in both the middle and high school divisions!

Michigan Great Lakes Virtual Academy (MGLVA) 10th grader Madison Corriveau won first-place in the high school division, and Michigan Virtual Charter Academy (MVCA) 8th grader Olivia Sipic won first-place in the middle school division. Second place winners in both divisions attend MGLVA: 12th grader Laura Otto and 7th grader Hailey Dykhouse.

These essays reflect the diversity and authenticity of the students. The students shared inspiring stories of bravery and resilience, spotlighting heroes who included a great-grandfather who survived a Nazi work camp, a Korean War veteran, a grandfather who battled cancer and a younger brother who persevered through childhood illness.

Kendall Schroeder, Head of School at MGLVA, said he is inspired by the courage of his students to share their family stories. “Madison, Laura, Hailey and Anja are my heroes! To be able to share their hearts and do it so eloquently shows self-confidence and courage,” said Schroeder.  “These students embody the core values of our schools, shining their beacons of light into the world. We are proud of each of them!”

Winners were chosen based on originality, how clearly the theme was expressed and adherence to rules of grammar, punctuation and style. First place winners receive $250 and a trophy, while second place winners get $125 and a certificate of recognition.

Schroeder adds, “To have captured the top places in this contest out of over 300 charter school students in Michigan, is simply amazing! This is a testament to our dedicated students and staff.”

You can read the essays here. Congratulations to all the winners!

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