Register Your School for Tennessee’s 2021 Virtual Poetry Out Loud Competition

From Melissa Moody, Arts Build Communities Coordinator –

The Tennessee Arts Commission is pleased to announce the launch of the 2020-2021 Poetry Out Loud Season.

Poetry Out Loud is a nationwide program created by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, encouraging the study of poetry to high schoolers through a unique competition. This program is sometimes a student’s first interaction with poetry and serves as an incredible tool for ALL students to learn useful public speaking and presentation skills. Poetry Out Loud is a fun, dynamic platform for ALL students to participate in a school activity, and learn useful public speaking and presentation skills.

Based on guidance received from the National Endowment for the Arts, we are strongly encouraging teachers and organizers at all contest levels to hold virtual competitions for the 2020-2021 POL season. This appeal is made to ensure the safety and well-being of students, parents, teachers, and everyone involved with Poetry Out Loud. Any organizer who declines to hold a virtual competition, and elects to hold an in-person contest, must follow all federal, state, and local guidelines in regard to slowing the spread of COVID-19. If you believe you will require technical assistance in order to run a virtual competition, please contact me.

Listed below are the key dates for the 2020-2021 Poetry Out Loud Season:

  • Tuesday, January, 12th, 2021: Deadline to send school registrations to TN Arts Commission
  • Monday, February, 1st, 2021: Deadline to register your school’s champion for the state competition
  • Friday, February, 26th, 2021: Tennessee Poetry Out Loud State Finals – This will be a virtual competition. Details to come.

As in previous years, free Poetry Out Loud teaching materials may be requested by completing the form here.

For more information, visit our Poetry Out Loud webpage or the National Poetry Out Loud website.