Kandace Pond of the Grand Bay Primary School won the 2nd Annual Kwéyòl Spelling Bee Competition held at the Awarak House of Culture on Tuesday May 17, 2011. She was the only participant to spell all assigned words correctly, a feat which placed her firmly in the top position.
Lillishia Angol of the St.Luke’s Primary School and Fanestha Alce of the St.Joseph Primary School won second and third places respectively. The event was organized by the Cultural Division and the Konmité pou Etid Kwéyòl (KEK).
Other participants in the finals were Allysha Joseph of the Atkinson Primary School, Prisca Daisma of the Goodwill Primary School, Nekel Roberts of the Grand Fond Primary, Brigitte Lavab of the Mahaut Primary School, Justlyn Ferrol of the Paix Bouche Primary School and Bakquar Frederick of the Salybia Primary School. The nine finalists emerged from preliminary rounds held a week earlier in nine zones around the island.
Chief Cultural Officer, Mr. Raymond Lawrence in his address to the finalists and other pupils attending the event noted that the Spelling Bee competition encourages pupils to read and speak the Kwéyòl language and that it helps them the understand and appreciate the Kwéyòl language much better. Mr. Lawrence saw this event as an important step towards the inclusion of the Kwéyòl language in the school curriculum.
Also addressing the event was Mr. Nicholas Goldberg, Senior Education Officer, Curriculum Measurement and Evaluation Unit of the Ministry of Education. He welcomed the Spelling Bee initiative and encouraged even greater participation in next year’s competition. He also urged the Cultural Division and KEK to hold Kwéyòl Reading Competitions, Kwéyòl Writing Competitions and Kwéyòl Song competitions as a way of fostering the language.
Two Kwéyòl publications produced by KEK were launched at the Spelling Bee event – “Mi Brèdèks”, a compilation of Kwéyòl expressions and “Ti Listwè Donmnik”, a compilation of short stories by Delia Cuffy-Weekes.