Secretary of Education’s 2020 Essay Challenge for Virginia and United States government students
Posted on 02/06/2020
Va. Sec. of Ed 2020 Essay Challenge

Prince William County Public Schools high school seniors are invited to enter the Virginia Secretary of Education’s 2020 Essay Challenge. The students who participate will have the opportunity to demonstrate an understanding of and commitment to engaged citizenship as it relates to the freedoms expressed in the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

All submissions are due no later than 5 p.m. on Saturday, February 29, 2020. The selected winners will be announced on Monday, May 18, 2020, with an awards ceremony in June 2020. At the ceremony, Secretary Atif Qarni will present the first-place winner a $500 prize, the second-place winner a $250 prize, and the third-place winner a $100 prize.

All individuals who wish to enter must submit a Secretary of Education's 2020 Essay Challenge Entry form (Word) electronically to Senator David Marsden’s office by 5 p.m. on Saturday, February 29, 2020, to If you have any questions about the contest, please contact Chad Starzer at (804) 698-7453 or by email at