Central Academy Students Excel in Iowa’s “Know Your Constitution” Competition

Seventeen Central Academy students were chosen as winners in the Young Lawyers Division of The Iowa State Bar Association’s “Know Your Constitution” competition. In addition, out of 1,500 essays submitted, Roosevelt High School junior Nathan Leys captured the award for the state’s best essay.

Leys will be presented with his award from the Iowa State Bar Association representative on Tuesday, January 24 at 11:30 AM in room 2004 at Central Academy.

In addition to Leys, winners in the essay contest were Jack Bequeaith (Roosevelt), Yadira Cano (Lincoln), Rebecca Cooks (Roosevelt), David Eckley (Roosevelt), Emma Fisher (Roosevelt), Becky Hall (Roosevelt), Nina Liu (Roosevelt), Megan Mansfield (Roosevelt), Jessa Marfal (North), Madison Pierce (Roosevelt), Rebecca Rasmussen (Roosevelt), Alisha Smith (North Polk), Bryce Stout (Lincoln), Brandon Ung (North), Luchang Wang (Valley), Takashi Yanagi (Valley).

Roosevelt senior Rebecca Cooks also was one of five students selected through a random drawing as a winner of an all-expense paid educational trip to Washington, D.C., sponsored by the Young Lawyers Division and the Close Up Foundation. The week-long study of the U.S. government and the political process will take place Feb. 19-24.

Essay writers were charged with ruling on the constitutionality of three parts of the fictitious American Readiness Mandatory Safety Act of 2013: whether the act’s gun-purchase requirement was constitutional; whether the provision prohibiting a federal court from hearing a case involving the act was constitutional; and whether the IRS’s assessment of a civil penalty against any person who chooses not to purchase a gun was constitutional.

“By participating in this competition, the students in AP U.S. Government and AP Comparative Government classes were able to demonstrate to a panel of lawyers their knowledge of the Constitution,” said Mike Schaffer, Central Academy government instructor.