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Jackson speech and debate team wins awards at district championship

The Jackson High School Speech, Debate and Drama Team won several awards at the MSHSAA district championship in Ste. Genevieve High School, including third overall and two individual district championships.

The Jackson team has competed since October, with the district competition concluding their regular season. At Ste. Genevieve, the team competed against students from other high schools in southeast Missouri. Out of the 24 schools competing, Jackson was third in overall team sweepstakes points.

Abby King was the district champion in international extemporaneous speaking, and Reyte Middleton was the district champion in story-telling. Both are state qualifiers and will compete in the statewide competition in April.

Other state qualifiers from Jackson include Avery Clubbs, J Todd, Neal Harrison, Ellie Foote and Bella Grant. Clubbs won fourth place in poetry reading and second place in duo interpretation with Todd. Harrison received third place in humorous interpretation, and Foote received third place in domestic extemporaneous speaking. Grant won second place in the original oratory category.

Jackson’s readers theater performance, “Project Semicolon,” also will advance to State, having placed second. The one-act play, “That’s Not How I Remember It” placed fourth.

The Jackson team received several additional awards including Todd receiving fourth place in dramatic interpretation, Samantha Webb and Abby Brees receiving fifth place in duet acting and AnnMarie Long receiving sixth place in radio speaking.

Jay Forness covers education, county government and community events for The Cash-Book Journal. He graduated from Southeast Missouri State University with a degree in multimedia journalism and has lived in Jackson for the past five years. He can be reached at

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