WARREN, NJ - Whether through well-written essays, mock trial demonstrations or all-state orchestra honors, students in Warren Township Schools continue to excel in local, regional and state contests and competitions.

Warren Middle School eighth graders Alexander Chen and Valerie Wang will perform with the New Jersey All-State Intermediate Orchestra at Summit High School on May 13. Chen and Wang, who play the violin and viola, respectively, auditioned in March for the coveted positions. The All-State Intermediate Orchestra - sponsored by the New Jersey Music Educators Association - is made up of the top middle/junior high school string players in New Jersey.

On May 18, twelve 7th grade legal eagles from the middle school will participate in two mock trials in front of a judge and an audience of over 100 people in New Brunswick. As part of the New Jersey State Bar Foundation’s Law Adventure program, the students with E2 teacher Susan Cooper submitted two mock cases to the organization’s mock trial competition, winning 1st place and Honorable Mention and the chance to move on to a larger stage.

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The 1st place winner -- “The Case of was Thrate a Threat” -- has the 7th grade team arguing the issue of whether a fictional 13-year-old with Asperger’s Syndrome presented a threat when repeating the words “bomb, bomb, bomb” after learning about suicide bombers during a social studies lesson on current events. Team members on this mock case are Adithi Adusumilli, Mia Kolb, Inica Kotasthane, Arjun Singh, Anya Solanki, Moha Trivedi and Zoe Wang.

“The Case of Parent Responsibility or Police Responsibility,” which received Honorable Mention recognition, involves a fictional single parent who is fined for not exercising parental responsibility to control his daughter’s delinquent behavior but who is also suing the fictional police department for violating an agreement to help his daughter instead of arresting her. Students arguing this mock case on May 18 are Arshia Agrawal, Sheridan Ameo, Savannah Bellovin, Ariha Mehta and Andrew Shi.

Mt. Horeb fifth grader Aanya Lal chose to champion the Bald Eagle for her Somerset County 2nd place finish in the “Species on the Edge Art and Essay Contest,” sponsored by the Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey. Writing in the first person as a female bald eagle named “Betsy,” Lal closes the essay saying “Bald eagles like me are in danger. Although we are America’s national animal, we suffer from the most terrible things. Like getting shot, or even poisoning. All you have to do to help us is, you can leave us a place to grow, eat and, most importantly, to survive.” 



Six students, grades 5-8, won awards in this year’s Watchung Hills Elks Lodge annual Americanism Essay Contest... answering the question “Why is it important to vote?” Eighth grader Valerie Wang won first place in the 7/8 grade division.

“I am so proud of Valerie’s great effort and I’m thrilled that many students took this opportunity to reflect on our freedom as Americans and the sacrifices of those who make it possible,” says 8th grade language arts teacher Christine Cirrotti.

Seventh graders Sara Ribeiro and Lea Gnoy won 2nd and 3rd place, respectively, in the Elks essay contest. In the 5/6th grade division, Woodland 5th grader Maira Murad placed first, followed by 5th grader Mia Edwards, also from Woodland, and Alisha Siddiqui, a Central 5th grader.

First place winners received a framed certificate and a $50 gift card from the Watchung Hills
Elks. Second and third place winners won a framed certificate and a $25 gift card. Additionally, Lea Gnoy, Maira Morad and Sara Ribeiro placed in the Central District contest, earning another certificate and an additional $50 gift card from the Central District Elks.


PHOTO #1 - Alexander Chen (violin) and Valerie Wang (viola) are among the top middle/junior high string players in New Jersey to perform in the All-State Intermediate Orchestra on May 13.

PHOTO #2 - Mt. Horeb School 5th grader Aanya Lal earned 2nd place in the “Species on the Edge Art and Essay Contest” for her essay on the bald eagle.