Weather safety poster contest begins

Staff report

The Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness (OCSWA) has announced that Ohio students in grades 1-6, including individualized instruction/special education classes, have until April 15 to draw and enter posters in its annual Severe Weather Awareness Poster Contest.

The purpose of the poster contest is to help engage Ohio’s youth in learning the importance of severe weather safety and preparedness. Through their illustrations, students can demonstrate what actions they can take before, during, and after severe weather events, to protect themselves and others. Students can draw posters on any weather event that typically impacts Ohio: winter storms, floods, tornadoes, thunder and lightning, and extreme heat.

“As educators, parents, and mentors, we are committed to teach safety and preparedness to our students – our children,” said Ohio Emergency Management Agency Executive Director Sima Merick. “Even though winter is around the corner, Ohioans need to not only be prepared for snow and ice storms, but also heavy rains, flooding, and even tornadoes. This poster contest provides the perfect opportunity for students to learn about Ohio weather and severe weather safety.”

Any Ohio first through sixth grader can enter the poster contest, whether they are home-schooled or attending a public, private or charter school. Teachers have until April 15, 2020, to send their first-place posters (per grade) to their regional National Weather Service offices. In early May, the Severe Weather Awareness Committee will judge the top regional posters to determine the state and overall winning posters.

Schools will be notified of their regional winners by the end of May. All regional winners will be invited to attend the poster contest awards ceremony, to be held in Columbus Saturday, Aug. 8, 2020.

All regional winners will receive a host of prizes and admission passes for the day at the Ohio State Fair. The overall and state grade-level winners will receive even more prizes, to include a NOAA Weather Radio, a smoke alarm, cash to be applied to a U.S. savings bond, a congratulatory letter from Gov. Mike DeWine, and a tour of their NWS office, among others.

For poster contest information, instructions, teacher’s guide, and student activity sheets visit

The Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness is comprised of 16 organizations and state agencies dedicated in teaching Ohioans severe weather safety and preparedness.

Staff report