Santa Barbara County Poetry Slam Winners Announced

Source: Santa Barbara County Education Office

Congratulations to the winners of the Santa Barbara County Poetry Slam 2022! They wowed the judges with their powerfully written, original poetry. Not only were participants judged on the content of their poems, but also on performance elements like enthusiasm, delivery, and audience participation. The event took place virtually via Zoom on Thursday, March 31, 2022, to kick off April as National Poetry Month!

1st place: 
Makai Copado, 11th grade, Pioneer Valley High School
“What We’ve Done Is What We know”
“I’ll Love You Forever”
2nd place:
Madeline Miller, 12th grade, San Marcos High School
“The One About Sea Anemonies”
“Song for My Sister”
3rd place:
Steven Villanueva, 12th grade, Righetti High School
“Peaceful, Screaming, Golden Gleam”
“Hammer of Justice™”

The Poetry Slam competition, which combines performance, writing, competition, and audience participation, is a program of the Santa Barbara County Education Office Educational Technology Services Department. This year, SBCEO tapped the team at the Get Lit – Words Ignite organization, a Los Angeles-based nonprofit founded in 2006 to increase literacy, empower youth, and energize and heal communities through poetry and visual media.

Ellen Barger, Assistant Superintendent of SBCEO Curriculum & Instruction, said of the event: “Spoken word poetry provides students a stage to be unapologetic truth-tellers and to use the power of language and authentic performance to transcend human struggle and create beauty. It is art for collective healing.”

The students will be performing their winning poem at the Juvenile Youth Empowerment Summit, hosted by SBCEO in October.  


Written by SBCEO

Press releases written by the Santa Barbara County Office of Education. Learn more at

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