An eighth-grade student from Nicollet Junior High and a seventh-grade student from Metcalf Junior High took first and second places in the 31st annual districtwide spelling bee in Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 on Dec. 1.
District spelling bee champion Aradhana Menon, right, and runner-up Chance Persons were presented with trophies by Superintendent Joe Gothard.
Aradhana Menon from Nicollet placed first by correctly spelling "alkali" which was the 219th word in the 15th round of the bee. Chance Persons of Metcalf was the runner-up.
This was Aradhana's first time qualifying for the district bee while Chance also participated as a 5th and 6th grader. Both students are avid readers, and say that contributes to their spelling success.
Others rounding out the top 5 (in alphabetical order) were Rachel Dylla of Nicollet Junior High, Ellie Scheldberg of William Byrne Elementary and Brandon Vi of Eagle Ridge Junior High.
A total of 31 students in grades 5 through 8, who were the building champions of their schools, competed in the district spelling bee.
The event began with Superintendent Joe Gothard presenting medals to every participant. "Students, I want you to know that as your superintendent, I am very proud of you," he said. "Taking the time to practice and prepare demonstrates your hard work and pride in achievement."
Jim Condon, a teacher at Edward Neill Elementary School, served as pronouncer. Judges were Gothard along with Erika Nesvig, principal of Harriet Bishop Elementary School, and Jon Bonneville, principal of Hidden Valley Elementary School. Jennifer Bohr, a teacher at Hidden Valley Elementary School, coordinated the spelling bee activities.
You can view the spelling bee on district's website at www.isd191.org and on Educational TV channel 18.