April 7, 2017
ST. THOMAS, USVI— The Gladys Abraham Elementary School took home its second Spelling Bee victory this year as second grader Nyeema Henderson correctly spelled “secede” to win the 2017 St. Thomas-St. John District Primary Spelling Bee held Thursday, April 6 at the Bertha C. Boschulte Middle School auditorium.
Elementary Programs Coordinator Kalamis Maduro opened the program by bringing greetings on behalf of Insular and Deputy Superintendents Dionne Wells-Hedrington, Raquel Berry Benjamin and Michael Harrigan. Maduro praised the students for achieving the milestone of making it to the Primary Spelling Bee and reminded them that they are all winners.
“No matter what the results are of the Spelling Bee today, all of these students are winners and we definitely look forward to seeing them participate in the intermediate spelling bee when they move onto the fourth grade” she said.
Twenty in-school winners from public, private and parochial schools participated in the Primary Bee, which lasted for 11 rounds. The students held strong with the first elimination coming only after five rounds. Round 10 met Joseph Sibilly third grader Annalisa Fletcher and Henderson with a challenging matchup, where Henderson was victorious.
All Spelling Bee participants received a trophy, spelling bee pencils and erasers, three books from Scholastic and a personalized Webster’s dictionary. The top six finalists also took home a Bananagrams game and the winner additionally received an iPad.
Maduro also explained that the St. Croix district is working to establish its district Primary Spelling Bee and similar to the Intermediate Spelling Bee, the top six from both districts will advance to compete in the territorial competition.
The top six finalists from the St. Thomas-St. John district in order of placement are Nyeema Henderson, Gladys Abraham; Annalisa Fletcher, Joseph Sibilly; Mirza Baig, Lockhart Elementary; Adore Defoe, Joseph Gomez; De'Aneysha Hill, Julius E. Sprauve; and T'Marii Francis, Bethel Baptist Day School.