Spelling bee champs letter perfect

| 02/12/2018
CNS Local Life

Secondary school winner Jemma Watson receives trophy from Lions Club president Stephen Best

(CNS Local Life): Cayla Ebanks from Bodden Town Primary School and Jemma Watson from John Gray High School were officially crowned Cayman’s best primary and secondary school spellers, respectively, last week. The students were competing at the 21st annual RBC Royal Bank Primary Spelling Bee and the 35th annual Lions Club of Grand Cayman Secondary Spelling Bee which took place on Tuesday, 27 and Wednesday, 28 November.

In all, 34 primary school students and 12 secondary students competed in their divisions for the titles of the nation’s top spellers, according to a Ministry of Education press release.

Supported by the ministry and the Department of Education Services (DES), the event featured competitors from both Government and private schools in Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac.  Both competitions were “intense” in the final rounds with Ben Hatt from Cayman International School and Jack Clark-Terrell from Red Bay Primary School having to do a tiebreaker to determine second place, the release said.

The word “portative” is what clinched it for Caylan after both boys stumbled on “vociferous” and “sobriquet”, respectively. “Nigrescence” was the word of the day for Jemma who beat out Sahil Jyoti of St Ignatius Catholic School and Aleque-Benjamin Bennett from Clifton Hunter High School.

CNS Local Life

Primary champ Cayla Ebanks during the contest

“As a former educator myself, I understand the correlation between spelling and increased reading ability so I am very proud of these students for taking on the challenge of expanding their reading and spelling knowledge in order to participate in these spelling bees,” said Minister for Education Juliana O’Connor-Connolly in the press release. “Thank you to both RBC Royal Bank the Lion’s Club of Grand Cayman for their ongoing commitment to the literary development of our students.  We appreciate the many years of support they have given.”

Mitzie Bailey, team manager RBC service delivery – Cayman, said of the bank’s involvement, “Education is paramount for the growth and development of every nation and RBC is pleased to continue this partnership with the Cayman Islands Ministry of Education and the Department of Education Services. We congratulate Cayla on her win and wish her and all her fellow participants continued academic success.”

Lions President Stephen Best said his club was “proud to partner” with DES each year to host the secondary school contest, adding, “Spelling bees are more than just words; they are a test in discipline and hard work. We are so proud of Jemma, who started in the primary bee, was runner-up in last year’s secondary bee and has persevered to take the title this year.

“Congratulations to her and all the competitors. Thank you to our sponsors, teachers, parents and supporters. Our members are already looking forward to next year’s spelling bee competition.”

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Category: High School, Primary School, Schools

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