CHESS : NATIONAL NEWS
The American Chess Foundation and Intel Inc. have joined forces in a new type of chess promotion. Their program, called Chess-in-the-Schools, teaches chess to third and fourth graders as a regular subject during normal school hours. A similar ACF campaign in New York City produced dramatic improvement in the students’ reading skills. Intel’s sponsorship will expand the program to Los Angeles, Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Philadelphia and Seattle.
Two San Fernando Valley schools, Beachy Avenue Elementary in Arleta and Valerio Street Elementary in Van Nuys, have been selected for the two-year program. Intel provided each school with a Pentium computer and chess software. The youngsters will use the computer to solve chess puzzles, to play by modem against children from other cities and to receive weekly advice from IM Maurice Ashley of New York. Teachers Hal Milner and Al Comroe will give on-the-spot instruction.
Ashley’s participation makes the program special. He has coached two Harlem teams, the Raging Rooks and the Dark Knights, that won the National Junior High School team championship, and he has thrilled audiences in New York and Moscow as a commentator at grandmaster tournaments. Now the highest-rated African American player, he credits chess study for helping him through his teen-age years in a rough neighborhood in Brooklyn. The ACF chose the right man to spark kids’ interest in chess.
The Wilshire Chess Society plans a year-long series of tournaments at the Westside Pavilion in Los Angeles. Each will take place in the Community Room (third floor, near the food court) on the fourth Sunday of every month. The first one, an Action chess (30-minutes per player per game) quad, will be held Jan. 22, beginning at noon. Register at the site at 11 a.m., or call Anthony Reynolds at (310) 391-5787.
The 1995 Los Angeles County High School Championship, a five-round tournament for students in grades 9-12, is scheduled Jan. 21 at Bell Gardens High School, 6119 Agra St. in Bell Gardens. Both individual and team trophies will be awarded. Call Ed Portillo at (818) 282-6798 for details.
The Warner Winter Scholastic tournament, a two-section event for players in grades K-9, will be held Jan. 21 at Warner School, 615 Holmby Ave. in Westwood. For more information, call Vicki Feldman or Robert Schlecht at (310) 470-1868.