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Colchester pupils win national spelling contest
CLEVER kids proved for the second year running that Colchester pupils are super spellers.
A team from Colchester County High School for Girls, in Norman Way, have been crowned winners of the Times Spelling Bee, the UK’s only national competition.
The girls, named Ladies Who Spell, won the final at the Institute of Education, in London. It meant they had triumphed over more than 1,200 other schools.
The girls have equalled the achievements of their male counterparts at the Colchester Royal Grammar School, who won the competition last year. Champions Maria Abbott, Azita Ahmadi, both 12, Claire Lucas, 11, and Megha Rolly, reached 100 points. The girls said: “It was one of the best experiences of our lives.”
Azita also won the individual play-off, correctly spelling bivouac, gelignite and diaphragm.
Victoria Carey, an English teacher who coached the team, added: “It’s a complete shock, but such a nice surprise.”
The girls were presented with the Spelling Bee Trophy by children’s TV personalities Dick McCourt and Dom Wood. They will also be invited to guest edit the Young Times section of the Times.
Each of the girls took home a Kindle, a Collins English Dictionary and a Cineworld family ticket. Gillian Marshall, headteacher, said: “We are delighted to win. While on duty at lunchtime, I have frequently observed Miss Carey and the pupils giving up their free time to practice for this competition.
“The real world is competitive and the pupils have demonstrated their capacity to remain calm, think carefully and cope under stress. They are all a credit to the school.”