A Spelling Bee competition hosted by the Ministry of Education has ended with Bong County emerging as the 1st place winner of this year’s competition.
Bong County’s David Howard, Jr. was followed by Vera Lah from Nimba & Courage G. Noring from River Gee in second and third places, respectively.
Student Howard is an 8th grader from Bong Mines Central High School, while second place winner, Ms. Lah, is a 7th grader of ArcelorMittal High School in Nimba County. Third place winner Courage G. Noring is an 8th grader of Kaytoken Elementary & Junior High School in River Gee County.
The Ministry of Education held the Spelling Bee competition in collaboration with partners, including the Lone Star Cell MTN.
Forty-two students participated in this year’s Spelling Bee finals, held at the Monrovia City Hall.
First-place winner David Howard Jr., walked away with US$1,500, while the second and third winners cashed in on US$1000 and US$500, respectively.
In Education Minister Edmonia Tarpeh’s speech, she said the competition was intended to showcase the spectacular display of scholars and talented students and the best performing students in grades 4 to 8.
According to Minister Tarpeh, reading and spelling have been a serious challenge in Liberian schools, and the Spelling Bee competition was one of the ways of motivating the young people to seek academic excellence and focus on preparing themselves for academic activities.
“This means reading and spelling should not just be an annual event, rather they must be an activities in the academic life of our students; and we want to encourage teachers, parents, education officers and all partners in the sector to be fully involved,” she said.
This year’s competition, which was the 7th annual event of its kind to be organized and hosted by the Ministry of Education, was themed, “Promoting Reading and Spelling in Liberia.”
The Minister further reassured participants of her Ministry’s commitment to promoting reading and spelling in Liberian schools in order to foster academic excellence. Tarpeh added that she was overwhelmed by the many parents and students, who showed interest in the competition, throughout the country.
She disclosed that ‘avenues’ were being explored in order for future winner to be able to participate in future international Spelling Bee competitions in other countries.
“Participating in international Spelling Bee competitions will not only heighten their profile and network, but primarily broaden their academic horizons,” the Education Minister explained.
The Country Director of Right to Play, Madam Josephine Kora-Thama, another collaborating partner of the contest, gave each of the 42 participants footballs and said the three winners are Ambassadors of Sports in their respective counties.
Madam Kora-Thama expressed appreciation to the MOE for motivating students in their academic activities. She used the occasion to call on parents and teachers to encourage and allow the children to have time to play.