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Rotary Club recognizes student winners of Four-Way Test essay contest

By Staff | May 15, 2018

PHOTO PROVIDED The students winners with their families. From left, teacher Paula Bolado, Mason Macalka and his father, Anna Wells and her mother, Johnny Jensen and his parents, and Rotarian Chet Sadler.

Over the past five years, the Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club has challenged The Sanibel School’s eighth graders to write an essay using the club’s Four-Way Test as the foundation of the composition.

More than 35 students submitted an essay this year. The club reported that it was a difficult task choosing the top three, plus an honorable mention, from all the well-written submissions.

The Four-Way Test of the things Rotarians think, say and do, is a 24-word code of ethics:

– Is it the truth?

– Is it fair to all concern?

PHOTO PROVIDED Student Anna Wells took first place with her essay on peer pressure.

– Will it build goodwill and better friendships?

– Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

The students were challenged to consider a problem or conflict faced by teenagers or young people in their age group, perhaps a dilemma they have faced personally or an issue facing their community, school, team, club or friends. Their essays were to describe how they could apply one of the Four-Way Test principles to address or resolve the conflicts.

Language arts teacher Paula Bolado worked with the students, which the club expressed its gratitude for. It reported that the grammar, deep thought and writing form of the students was at a high level.

Anna Wells took first place and was presented with a $100 check. Her essay on peer pressure stood out for its insight into the influence others have on the actions and decisions of today’s students. She discussed how one solution to peer pressure is “stay close to your true friends” and not get involved in things that can put one in danger.

PHOTO PROVIDED Student Johnny Jensen, who won second, reads his essay on school shootings.

Second place went to Johnny Jensen, who received a $50 check. His essay was on school shootings. Johnny explained the fear that students have today going to school and the dilemma of upholding Second Amendment rights while banning assault weapons.

Mason Macalka won third place, receiving a $25 check. Writing about school walkouts, he applied the fourth principle and made a case that it may not be beneficial to all concerned if everyone walked out.

Honorable mention went to Kayala Nette for her essay on the struggles teens face in today’s world.

The club also thanked the school, Principal Chuck Vilardi and the students who participated.

PHOTO PROVIDED The Sanibel School Assistant Principal Jamie Reid holds the annual plaque for the contest, which identifies the first place winners for the past five years.