NYLCThree students at Northlake Elementary have been selected to participate in the Junior National Young Leaders Conference in Washington, D.C. this summer, an opportunity to visit our nation’s capital, meet other outstanding kids from across the country, and hear inspiring speakers and programs.

You know what’s coming next. They need funding.

So far, teachers and supporters have gotten them almost halfway to their $2,500 total for each student. They hosted a Penny War between the Northlake classes and a car wash two weeks ago, and they’re within $200 of the funds they need for tuition. Now, they just need approximately $1,300 for airfare, and the kids will be on their way.

The six-day conference is sprinkled with small group time to discuss leadership, character-building, social activism, goal-setting, problem-solving and teamwork. They’ll have a sleepover at the Maryland Science Center and enjoy tourist outings to the White House, the U.S. Capitol and the MLK Memorial, among many other sites.

mary beth tinkerSpeakers will include Mary Beth Tinker, who was in the eighth grade when she, her siblings and other students decided to wear black armbands to school to mourn the dead on both sides of the Vietnam War. The Des Moines school board suspended her and her friends, and her case went to the Supreme Court. Her case formed the basis for Tinker v. Des Moines, a landmark freedom of speech ruling which found that public school students’ First Amendment rights to free speech do not end “at the schoolhouse gate.”

If you’d like to make a donation, you can mail or deliver it to Northlake at 10059 Ravensway, 75238. Make the check out to Excellence in Education Fund, with Northlake NYLC in the memo line. The teacher/sponsor for the trip, NLE’s Judy Kline, will handle it from there.