Poetry Competition


The Arkansas Arts Council, a division of the Department of Arkansas Heritage, has partnered with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation to encourage students to learn great poetry and develop real-world skills. Poetry Out Loud is a free, high school program that encourages the nation’s youth to learn about poetry through memorization and recitation. The program helps students build self-confidence, develop public-speaking skills, learn literary history and compete for more than $20,000 in awards at the national level.


Schools interested in getting their students into the competition must register with the Arkansas Arts Council at arkansasarts.org. All materials and resources will be provided. Competitions at the school or classroom level begin this fall. The student winners will represent their schools at the state finals March 16. The state winner will then represent Arkansas at the National Finals from April 30 to May 1 in Washington, D.C.

Each winner at the state level will receive

  • A $200 cash prize and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C.
  • A $500 cash stipend for their school to purchase poetry materials
  • An opportunity to compete at the 2019 National Finals for the title of National Champion and a $20,000 prize 

For more information contact Kim Davis, arts in education program manager, at 501-324-9769 or [email protected].