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March 21, 2023

Northern Rivers spelling star to compete in state final

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Xavier Morris will represent the Northern Rivers at the 2019 Annual Premier’s Spelling Bee. PHOTO: contributed.

A Northern Rivers school student has made it into the annual Premier’s Spelling Bee finals.

Xavier Morris is from Lennox Head Public School and will compete against 48 other students from across NSW in the spelling bee’s junior section this Friday, 8 November.

Xavier had to out-spell fellow juniors first at his school and then on a regional level to make it to the finals.

His success makes him part of the competition’s top 0.05% of entrants.

English spelling is preposterous!

Examples of words junior contestants might be asked to spell include perpetual; forfeit; and pharmacy.

Seniors might have to spell pejorative; feign; and preposterous.

The Premier’s Spelling Bee has been held for the past 16 years but organisers have said the 2019 Spelling Bee attracted a record participation of almost 170,000 students from 1006 public schools in NSW.

The figures reportedly reflect an increase of 2,520 students and 50 schools compared to entries in the 2018 competition.

To accommodate the increased number of entrants, the NSW Department of Education this year hosted 49 regional finals; 28 were in rural NSW and 21 in Sydney’s metropolitan areas.

The 2019 state final is due to be held in the Eugene Goossens Hall, at the ABC Centre in Ultimo.

A media release from the NSW Department of Education said NSW students performed strongly in spelling in the National Assessment Program Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN).

The department said 2019 preliminary results showed NSW had the highest percentage of students at or above the national minimum standard in spelling in all year groups (years 3, 5, 7, and 9).

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