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Sergio Reads: Hispanic Heritage Essay Winner

Commissioner Horne presentation

Sergio J. Galindo-Hamsho, 11, is the winner of the Elementary Division of Governor Jeb Bush's Hispanic Heritage Essay Contest. During a recent school assembly at Joseph A. Williams Elementary in Gainesville, Education Commissioner Jim Horne presented Sergio with his award, a four-year Florida Prepaid Scholarship and a Compaq personal computer.

Last year, Sergio's family moved to Gainesville from Vera Cruz, Mexico so his father could further his education. Sergio did not speak English. However, he has excelled at Joseph A. Williams Elementary. "He has come so far," said Principal Kathy Dixon. "We are so proud of him."

Reading the essay

The essay contest's theme was, "Celebrating the Hispanic Family: How my family has helped me appreciate reading." Marlene Bennett, a Spanish teacher at Joseph A. Williams, encouraged her students to enter the contest. In his essay, Sergio wrote about how thankful he is for the educational opportunities in Florida. He explained that reading has made him aware of how much history and culture are shared between Florida, the United States and Mexico.

The Galindo-Hamsho family enjoys reading together. Sometimes the family gets so involved with their reading they pretend to be the characters in a book and talk and act out the adventure.

To read Sergio's essay, visit: For more information on Joseph A. Williams Elementary School, visit: