‘Spell-Off’ gives Valley students the chance to compete amid canceled spelling bees

Local News

Fifteen schools sent their best spellers to the Eastwood Event Centre for the Trumbull County Spell-Off

NILES, Ohio (WKBN) – The COVID-19 outbreak has wreaked havoc on school schedules over the past 12 months, and a number of schools in Trumbull County missed out on the chance to send their best spellers to a Valley-wide spelling bee.

But on Monday, an event in Niles gave those students a chance to show off their skills.

Every year, the Trumbull County Educational Service Center puts on a spelling competition to get students ready for the Valley’s spelling bee. Of course, last year, the COVID-19 outbreak disrupted those plans.

“Last year, we literally got this in because it was around, I want to say February 27, it was the last Wednesday of February and then, you know, that the whole world changed the first week of March,” said Bill Bosheff, with the Trumbull County Educational Service Center.

This year, school schedules were impacted by COVID-19 safety protocols. Many were unable to organize their building competitions in time for the Valley-wide spelling bee.

“Because of the impact of COVID-19 and the fact that many of our school districts were shut down for some time, many of the buildings didn’t get a chance to host their bee,” Bosheff said.

So, 15 schools sent their best spellers to the Eastwood Event Centre for the Trumbull County Spell-Off.

Although no one would be moving on to a bigger stage, the spellers were eager to show their skills.

“Just going to be friendly competition among kids who did very well in their building bee and we do have some prizes,” Bosheff said.

Bosheff says the kids enjoy studying up and performing in front of a crowd.

“The idea of being able to be up in front of people under duress and being able to spell the word correctly and to show the poise that is necessary,” he said.

Luca Dennis, from Warren’s Lincoln PK-8 School, won the Spell-Off in the seventh round with the correct spelling of “tentacle.”

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