The Grundy County Spelling Bee, held on February 8, at Coalmont Ele-mentary School, saw Braiden Marsh from Tracy City Elementary School take home first place honors. Marsh will advance to the Regional Spelling Bee in Chattanooga. Following Marsh were McKenzie Meeks, Swiss Memorial Elementary School, second place; K.J. Layne, CES, third place; and Gavin Rodden, TCES, fourth place.
Participants in the Scripps District Level Spelling Bee had made the journey through the Scripps Classroom Contest and the Scripps School Contest to take their place on the stage at CES on Friday.
The team winner for the event was SMES. The team winner is determined by a ranking system in which schools receive points based on when spellers are eliminated.
In addition to the winner, runner-ups, and team prizes, other awards included:
The Louise Geary Layne Courtesy Award sponsored by David Patton. This award, started in 2007, is presented in memory of Layne, of Palmer, whose curtesy and compassion were an inspiration to all who knew her. This year’s winner was Ethan Prem Patel, North Elementary School.
In 2008, Patton also instituted the Y.B. Ashby Teamwork Award honoring a student’s ability to work toward a common goal. The award is meant to foster cooperation and teamwork among spelling bee participants. Winning the award this year was Mary Ella Davidson, Pelham Elementary School.
The Faithful Attendance Award, again sponsored by Patton, was created with the purpose of promoting faithful school attendance. To be eligible, a student must be a spelling bee contestant, have no tardies or early checkouts, and have missed no days up to a predetermined date. This year, the honor was shared by McKenzie Meeks, SMES, and Lyric Tate, NES.
A monetary award was presented in memory of Shannon Brown. Brown who served as a spelling bee coach for two Grundy County schools. The award was presented to Braiden Marsh, TCES.
For the second time, an award was presented to the Spelling Bee Coach of the Year. Rachel Reynolds, TCES, was honored with this award.
The spelling bee was opened with words from Dr. David Dickerson, Director of Secondary Instruction; a prayer by Ethan Meeks, SMES; and the Pledge of Allegiance led by Prem Patel, NES.
Judges for this year’s contest were Glenda Dykes, Director of Schools; Mary Jo Gallagher, Coordinator of School Health; Tisha Miller, assistant to the Director of Schools; Kathy Moon, Director of Elementary Instruction; and Mandy Phillips, Grundy County Herald Publisher.
Pictured at the 2019 Grundy County Spelling Bee are (l to r): Director of Schools Glenda Dykes; TCES Spelling Bee Coach Rachel Reynolds, Coach of the Year; Braiden Marsh, first place, TCES; MaKenzie Meeks, second place, SMES; K.J. Layne, third place, CES Gavin Rodden, fourth place, TCES; David Patton; Director of Secondary Instruction Dr. David Dickerson; and Director of Elementary Instruction Kathy Moon.