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Spellers from 24 local schools competed to be the best on the island at the 39th annual St. Croix District Spelling Bee, at the Good Hope School last Friday.
Each contestant had to win class bees and school bees to advance to the main competition. The top six spellers at the district bee would be sent to St. Thomas, to compete in the territorial bee on March 9th for a chance to advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

Ranging from age nine to 13, all the children looked nervous as they took to the stage. In her opening remarks, Deputy Superintendent Janine Schuster reminded them to take deep breaths and congratulated them on making it this far.

“I’m so proud of each and every one of you,” Schuster said. “It’s your day.”

Each student had their own style, some blurted out their answers immediately, while others took their time, asking for the definition of their word, hoping to find some insight into the vowel or consonant that was stumping them.

At the end of round 7 only six contestants remained, the judges stopped the competition momentarily so the crowd could congratulate the students on winning the right to advance to the territorial bee.