Sixth-graders from Morris County public, private and parochial schools are participating in the 2015 NCJW Diversity Contest, sponsored by the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), West Morris Section.

The contest, which is conducted in conjunction with the observance of Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday, is designed to complement class lessons on reducing prejudice and gaining an appreciation of social diversity.

Students’ original entries are submitted either in written form—including poetry, essays, short plays, short stories, or library research—or as works of art, such as drawings, paintings or photographs. Entries are judged on originality, clarity, development of theme, and emotional content.

Topics addressed in the contest entries are prejudices based on age, disability, ethnicity, family lifestyle, gender, health problems, the Holocaust, physical appearance, race and religion.

The contest is ideal for the sixth grade because, at that age, children are becoming more aware of and developing greater insight into all types of prejudice. The contest, which is held in memory of Amy Rotberg Mintz and Helen Weiss, also dovetails nicely with the sixth-grade curriculum. The contest chair is Karen Secular of Morris Township.

A special awards reception, honoring the Grand Prize winners, the Outstanding Award winners, and those receiving Honorable Mention, will be held in May.

The National Council of Jewish Women is a volunteer organization, inspired by Jewish values, that works through a program of research, education, advocacy and community service to improve the quality of life for women, children and families, and strives to ensure individual rights and freedoms for all.

For further information about the NCJW, West Morris diversity contest, email Individual sixth-graders whose schools are not participating may contact for information on how to enter the contest on their own.