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May 21, 2004

Cayo student is nation’s top speller

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It is one of those annual events that the media–and public–use to mark the all too rapid passage of time. As usual, this year’s competition was keen, the prizes generous, and the organisation superb. That’s right, we could only be talking about the spelling bee.

Jacqueline Woods, Reporting

A huge success is the only way Bowen and Bowen Limited describes this year’s national Coca Cola spelling Bee. The competition was the tenth of its kind and featured top spellers from all six districts. By the time the competition came to a close at the end of nine rounds inside the Belize City Centre, twelve year old Myles Cattouse from Ontario Christian School walked off with the first prize

Myles Cattouse, 2004 National Spelling Champion

“I studied all night and on the bus coming here I was studying still yet.?

Jacqueline Woods

?Were you pretty nervous when you got to the Belize City Centre??

Myles Cattouse

?Not really, just that because it was the first time?the thing was so huge, it was huge, the building.?

Jacqueline Woods

?What did you think of the words??

Myles Cattouse

?They were pretty easy, a lot of them.”


It was a bitter sweet occasion for thirteen year old Keyren Dzib of Ladyville’s Our Lady of the Way Roman Catholic School. Dzib captured second place.

Keyren Dzib, 2nd Place, National Spelling Contest

“I wanted to be the first place winner, not for the computer, I just wanted my school to do good. But I am pretty much satisfied with second place even though I didn?t really get what I wanted.”

“I looked through the dictionary, find unfamiliar words, and my teacher helped me a lot, my principal also. Every morning I spent at least an hour on the national elimination list. And then in the night time, because P.S.E. is over, I go through the dictionary and look for the words that are unfamiliar, would have silent letters and letters at the back that you wouldn’t know.”

Nicholas Pollard, Jr., Marketing Manager, Bowen & Bowen Ltd.

“We are trying to get a standard where at any time we could be ready for an international contest. We keep adding more difficult words to the reserve list and to the extra-reserve list, and that was one of the main points that were buzzing around the contest today, that some of the words were a bit difficult. But these students have been prepared for at least two to three years. They have been coming up from standard four and they are champions at the district level, they have been working hard and I think they did exceptionally well.”

The two top spellers both received computers along with a printer and other accessories, while the third place winner, Akira Genius, received a fifteen hundred dollar scholarship. The Coca Cola National Spelling Bee started in 1995.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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