A nod from the judges, and E.K. Powe Elementary’s first-grade spelling champion returned to his seat with a smile, waiting for the next round and his next turn to spell.
So opened the E.K. Powe school-wide spelling bee, iterations of which are taking place in elementary schools across Durham and Orange counties all this month. The winning spellers will compete in Duke’s Page Auditorium on March 6, and the regional winner will get an all-expenses-paid trip to the nation’s capitol to compete — on ESPN — in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
It’s the first time students in the Durham, Chapel Hill-Carrboro and Orange County school systems have had that opportunity — thanks to the sponsorship of Duke University’s Office of Durham and Regional Affairs — and it’s causing a lot of excitement.
Lou Rollins, Director of Special Projects in the Office of Durham and Regional Affairs, is coordinating the bee sponsorship and planning the regional event. She’s seen a flood of thank you emails from teachers and principals grateful to see their students pumped up about spelling.
As one bee coordinator from Hope Valley Elementary put it: “Can’t tell you how much our school has rallied around this. They have really loved it. Thanks so much to your office for making it possible!”
Check out photos from the bees at E.K. Powe and Club Boulevard.
And join us at Page Auditorium, March 6 at 9 am, for the regional bee!