Sixth-graders rule at the NMS and district spelling bees


Two Northumberland Middle School sixth-grade students walked away with both the middle school and district spelling bee crowns at this year’s competitions.

Joseph Jett won the middle school championship February 16, besting 17 other students, reported spelling bee coordinator Dale Harter. He earned the right to advance to the district bee, along with runners-up Madison Garrity, Teshauna Johnson and Hallie Shackleford.

Unfortunately, the flu bug knocked Garrity out of the competition, forcing a mini-bee among Sadie Blake, Owen Newsome and Sophia Sapanara, said Harter. Blake won that event to secure a place in the district bee.

At the district bee February 23, Blake came out on top again by defeating the other middle school finalists and three students from Northumberland Elementary, he said. She will compete in the Regional Spelling Bee March 11 at the Library of Virginia in Richmond.

Jett is the son of Lawrence and Pam Jett of Heathsville. Blake is the daughter of James and Uni Blake of Reedville.