ADA, Okla., Feb. 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Determined Ada High School students spent weeks knocking on doors, handing out fliers, sending emails, talking to friends, family members – anyone who would listen – about the dangers of texting and driving and urging community members to pledge to X the TXT(SM) in a national competition. When the votes were tallied, Ada High School accomplished what hundreds of high schools across America could not: rallying the highest percentage of participation (calculated as a percentage of school size) to take the pledge not to text and drive.
"The contest was important because life is fragile and, while I'm a competitive person, it made me feel good to know that of the hundreds of students who participated, we've probably saved at least one of their lives from a texting while driving collision," said Colton Lott, an Ada High School student who helped lead the effort.
The win earned the school a $10,000 grant from The Allstate Foundation, as well as a private concert from rising singer/songwriter Ashlyne Huff, who will appear at Ada High at a planned event in May during National Youth Traffic Safety Month. To kick off the concert and day-long festivities, Channel One, the leading television news network for teens, will tape a broadcast from Ada High, which will be seen by an audience of nearly six million young people in middle schools and high schools across the country.
"When I heard about the contest, I said 'We can do it, we can win this,'" commented Ali Lawson, the Ada High leadership teacher who spearheaded the campaign, along with her service learning classes of 115 sophomores, juniors and seniors. "The students were the catalysts for the campaign, but the whole community pitched in," continued Lawson, "from the local college, to the town's small businesses, to the Chickasaw Nation, headquartered in Ada. It was a true community effort."
"I am thrilled that a school in our community achieved this win and that Allstate offers programs like this that are life-changing experiences for our teens," said local Allstate representative, Brenda Allford. "The X the TXT movement has made a strong mark on Ada and we won't soon forget it."
The competition was created by The Allstate Foundation and Channel One News through a partnership to grow Allstate's X the TXT movement in schools across the country, and empower students to tackle the issue of distracted driving. The week-long competition, held Feb. 7-13, called for students to rally their peers, family, friends and community to take the pledge on the X the TXT contest website not to text and drive. More than 300 schools across the country signed on for the contest, including three schools from Oklahoma.
Ada District Court Judge Tom Landrith said he took the pledge after his court staff told him about the campaign: "This is an issue (texting and driving) about gross negligence, but unfortunately, people still do it. This campaign made a lot of people aware of just how dangerous it is."
"Channel One and The Allstate Foundation's X the TXT competition succeeded in raising awareness for a very important issue among a population of teens who are at greater risk to the dangers of texting while driving," commented Kent Haehl, CEO, Channel One Network. "Ada High School put forth an enthusiastic campaign to win the competition and we look forward to rewarding their impressive effort."
About The Allstate Foundation
Established in 1952, The Allstate Foundation is an independent, charitable organization made possible by subsidiaries of The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL). Through partnerships with nonprofit organizations across the country, The Allstate Foundation brings the relationships, reputation and resources of Allstate to support innovative and lasting solutions that enhance people's well-being and prosperity. With a focus on teen safe driving and building financial independence for domestic violence survivors, The Allstate Foundation also promotes safe and vital communities; tolerance, inclusion, and diversity; and economic empowerment. For more information, visit www.allstate.com/foundation.
About Channel One News
Peabody and Telly Award-winning Channel One News, an Alloy Media + Marketing company, is the leading television news network for teens, reaching nearly six million young people in middle schools and high schools nationwide - broadcast each day to close to 1 in 4 of all teenagers in the U.S. The dynamic, daily broadcast and supplementary educational resources inform, educate, and inspire teens, connecting them with important current events and the world around them. Channel One News has covered fast-breaking global events from regions such as Haiti, Chile, Mexico, Sierra Leone, North Korea, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Germany and Qatar. Through its partnership with CBS News Productions, Channel One News draws on the vast resources of CBS News, ensuring worldwide coverage wherever and whenever news breaks - and always from a teen perspective. Channel One News programming has been featured on leading networks and news programs, including CBS, CNN, NBC Nightly News and Today Show, ABC News and Nightline. Visit the Webby Award-winning website www.ChannelOne.com to learn more.
SOURCE The Allstate Foundation