Murrow Students Making Their Moves at Chess Nationals

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Some city high school students are working extremely hard this spring break week -- and loving it.

The Edward R. Murrow High School chess team is in Minneapolis, competing in the national chess championship this weekend, the New York Times' City Room blog reported Wednesday. And according to Dylan Loeb McClain, The Times' chess columnist, the team is a true reflection of 2012 New York: an amalgam of representatives from nations around the world, many of them first-generation immigrants.

The team won the state championship in March, extending its winning history and setting them up for the nationals. City Room reports:

Eliot Weiss, the chess team’s only coach since its founding in 1981 and a math teacher at the school, said the team was not always such a perfect reflection of polyglot Brooklyn. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, Murrow’s team was stocked with recent transplants from chess-mad Eastern Europe who helped the school win three consecutive national championships from 1992 to 1994 and four more from 2004 to 2007, when the team was anchored by two international masters from Lithuania and Russia.

“People used to say I should go to Red Square and put up a sign saying ‘Murrow High School’ or stand at J.F.K. with a sign saying ‘Murrow’,” Mr. Weiss said.

But in true New York style, new immigrants are ascendant, and only one student remains on the team who hails from the former Soviet Republic.

Some team members have promised to send SchoolBook reports from Minneapolis, so stay tuned this weekend. Here's hoping they are able to report on win after win.

Here's some of the education events going on around the city on this cool spring day:

From 6 to 8 p.m., the Flatbush YMCA and the YMCA New Americans Initiative is hosting a Forum on Immigration featuring Fatima Shama, the city's Immigrant Affairs Commissioner, and William Boyle of CUNY Citizenship Now!/City College Immigration Center. The discussion will focus on "gaps in education and legal services within the Flatbush, Brooklyn community." The event, at the Flatbush YMCA at 1401 Flatbush Avenue, is free and open to the public.

Parents: Are you looking for books for your child's school library? The Brooke Jackman Foundation -- a 10-year-old charity created in honor of a 23-year-old victim of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, who was an avid reader -- says it will stock school libraries with thousands of books as part of its Books 4 Our School month-long challenge. The challenge is open to any middle, elementary, or nursery school (public and private) school in the city, Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland or Fairfield counties. Parents can register their child’s school at

The New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children holds its Inaugural Spring Luncheon at The Pierre Hotel in Manhattan. It will feature a keynote address by Sapphire, author of the novel, "Push."

From 6 to 9 p.m., a Brooklyn-based architect and artist, Mike Ingui, will hold an opening reception for his show at TriBeCa's One Art Space of a series of Brooklyn-themed abstract paintings, “Departures,” and will donate the profits of one of the Bridge paintings to the science lab of the school his son attends, Public School 261 Philip Livingston in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. According to a news release, "the Science Lab is being developed by the super-popular 'Carmelo the Science Fellow' and science teacher Scott Howard." P.S. 261: Post photos of the lab on your school's SchoolBook page, for everyone to see.