School news

Buzzing with knowledge - SBISD students shine during annual spelling bee



Top student spellers gathered at Westchester Academy for International Studies on Friday, Feb. 16, for the SBISD Spelling Bee.

During the spelling bee, 50 students from 25 schools across the district in grades third through eighth competed for the winning title.

The students were pre-qualified, as they had previously participated in oral tests before advancing to the district-wide competition. (See list of campus winners and runner-ups below)

After 18 rounds, the winning word was “plutonium.”

The winner? Divakar Shenoy, an eighth grader from Memorial Middle School and the runner-up in the 2023 SBISD Spelling Bee. Arthur Jainsky, a seventh grader from Spring Branch Academic Institute was runner-up.

Along with a certificate and trophy, Divakar received a Black Fire HD 10 (13 Gen, 2023 released) wifi-enabled tablet with a yellow cover to assist with his academic endeavors and any preparation for future spelling bee competitions.



Divakar Shenoy will represent SBISD at the 2024 Scripps Regional Spelling Bee hosted by Houston Community College on March 23, 2024.

“The SBISD Spelling Bee is only a few hours in length but requires hours and hours of preparation by each participant,” said Linda Bimler, SBISD Gifted and Talented facilitator.

“We hope this competition leads them to a life-long love for words and learning in general!”

Event judges included Roberta Smiley, pronouncer and National Spelling Bee finalist, Kathleen Grant, lead judge and retired SBISD Pre-AP ELA teacher, Janet Christman, retired SBISD Pre-AP ELA teacher and Helen Welter, community member.