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7th Grader Wins 2024 Regional Spelling Bee

7th Grader Wins 2024 Regional Spelling Bee

Seventh-Grader Leah Rini, representing Beekmantown Middle School, was named the Grand Champion at the 23rd Annual Regional Spelling Bee, sponsored by Champlain Valley Educational Services as an affiliate of the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

Rini competed against 44 other students from 18 schools representing 10 districts in Clinton and Essex Counties. She spelled “cartilage” to capture the spelling bee crown.

The event this month happened on the stage of the Beekmantown Central School District Auditorium. The competing students had all previously won spelling bees in their respective schools and represented the top spellers in grades four through eight.

Through generous donations from area businesses, CVES was able to become a regional sponsor for the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Rini will advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington D.C. at the end of May.

"Winning Grand Champion at the Regional Spelling Bee shows a passion beyond words. It shows that the student has put in a lot of time studying, enjoys competition and tries to challenge themselves in intellectual ways," said Hilary Eilers, Regional Spelling Bee Committee Facilitator.

“Being successful is inspired by the support from the student’s family and home school district. It takes dedication, hard work and perseverance to reach the height of achievement. It takes courage to go on stage and compete like this. I am so proud of each and every student who competed. Self confidence is a superpower. Once you start to Bee-lieve in yourself, greatness will always be achieved.”

The other winners this year: Eighth-grader Emma Sheldrake from Peru was the first runner-up and Grade 8 Champion. From Keene, Rhea Mackey won Grade 6 Champion. Boquet Valley student Mason Peck is the Grade 5 Champion. The Grade 4 Champion was awarded to Iesha Allado from Moriah.

Several other spellers represented Beekmantown CSD and their grade level. Skye Lamoureux and Owen Rini represented Grade 4, Betty Lewandowski and Lily Sarnow represented Grade 5, Zilpha Irland represented Grade 6 and Tyler Sand represented Grade 8. 

All students worked hard to make it to regionals, and it shows impressive skill to compete against other students at this level. 

Thanks to Rini's win, Beekmantown will have the honor of hosting the regional bee again next year.