Eleven Middle Schools Compete in LAPD-Auto Club Traffic Safety Mural Contest

(LOS ANGELES, March 25, 2009) – Students from 11 middle schools in Los Angeles will be competing in the 2009 Traffic Safety Mural Competition sponsored by the LAPD and Automobile Club of Southern California. Top prize for the winning school’s artistic efforts is $1,000 and a completed mural that will serve to raise traffic safety awareness among young teens.

Certificates and $500 and $300 for the second and third place winning murals also will be provided. Vista Paint is donating paint to the schools and professors from the Otis School of Art and Design will judge the murals.

The competition, open to Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) middle schools, requires art students to design and paint a wall-size mural on their school grounds depicting positive themes of traffic safety awareness affecting their classmates, school and neighborhood.

"The mural project is an excellent opportunity for middle school students to express their concerns regarding local traffic safety issues. And in these tight-budget times, the program allows students to earn money for their schools art programs," said Officer Joseph Taylor, of the LAPD’s West Traffic Division, Community Traffic Safety Unit.

Middle schools participating in the 2009 mural competition include: Bancroft; Berendo; Cochran; LeConte; John Burroughs; Marina del Rey; Mark Twain; Mulholland; Orville Wright; Palms; and Paul Revere.

“The 2008 winning theme by Marina del Rey Middle School students was, ‘Anti-DUI,’ featuring cars falling off a stretch of freeway due to driver impairment,” according to Rick Lalor, the Auto Club’s Motor Sports Manager. Their teacher was Nancy Hanover-Reyes. Samuel Gompers and Thomas Star King students came in second and third places, respectively.

LAPD West Traffic Division officers and representatives from the Auto Club will present a check, plaque and certificates to the winning students in May in front of the 2009 winning mural at the middle school.