(Media release from Floyd County Schools):

Karis Long, a seventh-grade student at Model Middle School, has won the 2022 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 2022 contest was the 13th annual competition and used the speech theme “Staying Optimistic in Challenging Times”.

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. The contest was judged by retired educators of Floyd County Schools, Gail Silver, Sarah Whitley, and Norma Williams. 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: Peytyn Barker, seventh-grade

Second place: Olivia Casey, seventh-grade

Coosa Middle

First place: Elinor Thomas, seventh-grade

Second place: Kayne Couch, seventh-grade

Model Middle

First place: Karis Long, seventh-grade

Second place: Ava Styles, seventh-grade

Pepperell Middle

First place: Caedmon Burnette, seventh-grade

Second place: Rylin Crane, seventh-grade

Overall Winners

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

Second place: Elinor Thomas, seventh-grade, Coosa Middle

Third place: Ava Styles, seventh-grade, Model Middle