Citizens For A Better Norwood

Friday, April 11, 2008

Guest blog: Jen Seurkamp reports on Allison chess feats

A big thank you to Allison parent Jen Seurkamp for sending us a blog about the astonishing Allison Elementary 5th and 6th graders’ showing at the recent Queen City Classic Chess Tournament. As you’ll see, they were up against more experienced players but managed to make some great placements. Congratulations to all the Allison chess stars and to their fantastic coach, Mr. Dykes!

Allison Elementary sent 27 fifth and sixth graders to the Queen City Classic Chess Tournament held at Paul Brown Stadium on April 4th and 5th. The students had a chance to play local and international masters on Friday night and tournament play was held on Saturday. This tournament is attended by close to 700 students at all playing levels. It is one of the largest chess tournaments in the Midwest.

The club is coached by Mr. Dykes, Allison’s 5th grade science teacher, and is open to students in the 5th and 6th grade. Most of the students have been playing for only one to two years. The 5th grade team came in 5th place overall in the 5th Grade unrated and had at least four kids in the top 20. The sixth grade team won 1st place in 6th grade unrated division. Four players on that team, Kareem Khalil, Alex Jackson, Carter Wilson, and Zack Mann placed in the top 10. The fifth grade team came in 5th place and had 4 Players place in the top twenty.

This is an amazing accomplishment for the students and the school. Some of our kids played children who had been playing for seven to eight years and we held our own, if not won the matches. Our team was complimented multiple times by the stadium staff and tournament staff for great behavior and organization. Many parents and grandparents spent the entire day at the stadium cheering our kids on. It was an amazing day for the kids, the parents, Allison Elementary, and the Norwood school system.

Jen Seurkamp