For the second year in-a-row, Emily Cai, an eighth-grade student at Lynn Middle School, took home first place in the LCPS District Spelling Bee and secured her spot to compete against 180 other regional spelling bee winners in the upcoming El Paso Times Regional Spelling Bee, Friday, March 3 at Bel-Air High School in El Paso, TX.

“It was great to see parents and sponsors advocate for their participant and it was clear the students were well prepared,” said Josie Miller, one of the Spelling Bee coordinators. “The Spelling Bee is a great way to reinforce the importance of foundational literacy and language skills.”

Serenity Parra, a fifth-grade student from Conlee Elementary School, won second place in the tournament, followed by Adam Mssika, a sixth-grade student from Vista Middle School, who won third place. The districtwide Spelling Bee was held on Friday, Jan. 13 at the Oñate High School Performing Arts Center, and drew 23 third- through eighth-grade participants who previously won the spelling bees at their individual schools.

All 23 of the District Spelling Bee participants will also be invited to participate in the El Paso Times Regional Spelling Bee. Should any of the LCPS students win the regional tournament, they will advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee and earn an all-expenses paid trip to Washington D.C.

Cai is a member of the Lynn Middle School Art Magnet Program, the weekly Spelling Bee Club, the Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement (MESA) club, a cellist in the Orchestra and a vocalist in the Doña Ana Youth Choir. This is third time Cai has participated in the District Spelling Bee, and in 2016, she placed in the top 25 finalists at the El Paso Times Regional Spelling Bee.

If Cai wins the regional tournament, she will be the second Lynn Middle School student to advance to the national tournament since Olivia Weinbaum, a former Lynn Middle School student, advanced in 2013. Lynn Middle School is in the process of becoming the district’s first community school, a concept in which the school partners with community organizations to provide support services and resources that mutually benefit the students and surrounding community.

Spelling Bee Winners

(pictured right to left) Emily Cai, an eighth-grade student at Lynn Middle School, Serenity Parra, a fifth-grade student from Conlee Elementary School, and Adam Mssika a sixth-grade student from Vista Middle School, were named the top three spellers at the LCPS District Spelling Bee, Friday, Jan. 13 at the Oñate High School Performing Arts Center.