Natalie Long, a seventh-grade student at Model Middle School, has won the 2020 Floyd County Schools Gifted Oratorical Contest. The oratorical event was started in 2009 to allow gifted students to display their academic skills and connect with other students. The 2020 contest was the 11th annual competition and used the speech theme “Just Imagine a World without Boundaries” 

Long and participants from Armuchee Middle, Coosa Middle, Model Middle, and Pepperell Middle participated in the 11th annual oratorical contest on Friday, January 31, at the Floyd County Board of Education’s central office on Riverside Parkway. 

Gifted students competed at the school level to represent their school and advance to the system contest. The top two school qualifiers from each middle school participated in the system contest for 6th, 7th or 8th-grade gifted students in Floyd County Schools. The contest was judged by retired teachers of Floyd County Schools, Sarah Whitley, Dottie Taylor, and Jean Battle. The contestants were scored on poise, speech content, delivery, and overall effectiveness. The speech could be no more than five minutes.

The winners of the contest were:

Armuchee Middle

First place: Sophie Thacker, seventh-grade 

Second place: Ava Cooper, sixth-grade 

Coosa Middle

First place: Bryson Rosales, sixth-grade

Second place: Claire Gilreath, eighth-grade

Model Middle

First place: Natalie Long, seventh-grade

Second place: Sarah Grace Abernathy, seventh-grade

Pepperell Middle

First place: Violet Lefevers, eighth-grade

Second place: Rylee Nix, seventh-grade

Overall Winners

First place: Natalie Long, seventh-grade, Model Middle

Second place: Sarah Grace Abernathy, seventh-grade, Model Middle

Third place: Bryson Rosales, sixth-grade, Coosa Middle