UNION, NJ – Twelve Union students will be moving onto the state competition of the National PTA Reflections Program.  They were  honored at the National PTA’s Founders Day dinner at the Gran Centurion in Clark last week. 

The National PTA Reflections Program is the PTA’s cornerstone arts program.   The program was developed in 1969 by Colorado’s PTA President Mary Lou Anderson, to encourage students to explore their talents and express themselves. The program was described by Anderson as “almost too simple”.  That simplicity – of asking children to express themselves artistically based on a common theme – is the foundation of this long-standing program.

“It was amazing to see so many of our students honored,” said Assistant Superintendent Gerry Benaquista.  “We are so proud to have such creative and motivated students in all the categories. Good Luck to those moving on to the State level.” 

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This year, the Program inspired millions of students to reflect on the theme, which is “Heroes Around Us.”  Each year, students in Grades Pre-K through 12 are recognized for bringing the theme to life through dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography and visual arts.

Township of Union students from grades K-12 participated by submitting their entries in all categories to their local PTAs. The work was judged and the winning entries advanced to the County level for judging. The following schools had students advance to the state level for the next round.

Livingston School

     Jordan Boakye - Literature

     Nicholas Laube - Literature

Washington School

     Cassandra Freyre - Visual Art

     Darlene Ransom - Dance Choreography

Connecticut Farms School

     Emily Flores - Visual Art

Jefferson School

     Angelina Baquero - Visual Art

     Zuriel Marino - Literature

     Bridget Kelly - Photography

Kawameeh Middle School

     Kaitlyn Pello - Visual Art

Union High School

     Dabny Campos - Photography

     Maria Hanna - Photography

     Justine Murphy - Photography

Washington School PTA president Nicole Ahern added, “The PTAs in Union are so proud of the students that took the time to participate in the Reflections Program to showcase their various talents. We are happy to be able to celebrate this achievement with them and their families at the Founder’s Day dinner.”