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Byron Shire
August 9, 2022

North coast students spellbound in anticipation of finals

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Junior finalist Sunny from Bangalow Public School. Photo supplied.
Junior finalist Sunny from Bangalow Public School. Photo supplied.

Six far north coast students are in the running to be crowned the state’s best speller after making it through the Regional Finals of the NSW Premier’s Spelling Bee.

The students were rewarded with a place in the prestigious Spelling Bee State Final in Sydney in November, where 86 students from across the state will compete for the title.

The local finalists are: River R, Yamba Public School, junior; Ben D, Dunoon Public School, junior; Bradley G, Terranora Public School, junior; Che M, Palmers Island Public School, senior; Sunny D, Bangalow Public School, senior; Amelie M, Pottsville Beach Public School, senior.

Senior finalist Amelie from Pottsville Beach Primary School. Photo supplied
Senior finalist Amelie from Pottsville Beach Primary School. Photo supplied


‘Winning a spot in the State Final is quite an achievement, with around 3,200 students from almost 1000 public schools across NSW competing in the regional finals this month (4-15 September) and more than 153,000 students taking part in this year’s competition,’ said an education department spokesperson.

‘To make it to the regional finals, the junior finalists had to correctly spell words such as refugee, raucous and congregate. Meanwhile, senior students were challenged with words like cruciferous, boisterous and tzatziki,’ he added.

‘NSW is the top-ranked State in mean spelling scores at all year levels in this year’s NAPLAN. The Premier’s Spelling Bee is just one of the many initiatives that are improving the literacy skills of public school students across NSW.’

Writing award

Meanwhile, one local student has been chosen among 18 around the state as a recipient of the NSW Educational Standards Authority (NESA) 2017 WriteOn awards.

Estella Wog, from St Josephs Primary School, South Murwillumbah, won the award for her narrative piece I Love a Parade.

WriteOn is an annual writing competition open to all NSW primary students in Years 1 to 6. Students were asked to compose an imaginative text of up to 500 words in length in response to a photograph. Entries included narratives, poems, and letters.

David de Carvelho, CEO of NESA, said the imaginative texts produced by the students were truly outstanding.

‘WriteOn is a celebration of excellence, judged by a panel of experienced educators from all sectors and NESA representatives. These young students will become published authors, which is a brilliant achievement,’ he said.

‘Writing is integral to students’ learning throughout their time at school and beyond. Initiatives such as WriteOn encourage the development of imaginative writing skills and help to promote a love of writing. The Best of WriteOn Anthology provides students and teachers with inspirational examples of students’ written works,’ he added.


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