Seniors In Forest Hills Still Need $22K To Pay For Trip To Social Studies Contest

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Some local high school students, who won a New York state social studies competition are poised to head to the national contest, but only if they raise enough money to get there.

The team from Forest Hills High School, which is made up of 34 seniors, has to come up with $22,000 by March 15 if they are to compete in the “We the People” competition, which takes place in Washington D.C. at the end of April.

Tara Kelly, a social studies teacher at the school, said it would really be a shame if the students had to back out because of a lack of financial support.

“I’ve had students who when asked what [the competition] meant to them, one of the things one student said was that ‘It’s really hard to get kids enthused and engaged in learning’ and this program — the way that it’s set up — really forces them to take a lot of responsibility and actually be excited about learning,” Kelly told 1010 WINS.

Students have studied the Constitution, Bill of Rights as well as Supreme Court decisions for the competition at the Center for Civic Education.

Kelly said the students have been really interested and engaged in the subject matter.

“They come into class everyday, asking ‘Did you see this in headlines, did you see this in the newspaper’ and a lot of people think that students are apathetic to learning, but through this program, kids of all various educational levels and capabilities getting really engaged and interested,” she said.

Through the help of community members, the principal of the school, Saul Gootnick, has been able to secure about $18,000 of the $40,000 needed to attend the event.

If you would like to make a donation, you can do so by calling the school at 718-268-3137 or send an email to

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