Stellar Spellers from Santa Barbara County Head to State Spelling Bee
County Spelling Bee Champs Advance to Statewide Competition in Stockton
Carpinteria Middle School 6th grader Emiliano Jimenez (left) took first place in the elementary division and St. Raphael Catholic School 8th grader Luke Johansen in the junior high division of the Santa Barbara County Spelling Bee on Thursday, March 9. | Credit: Santa Barbara County Education Office
Four of Santa Barbara’s stellar student spellers will be buzzing on up to the California State Spelling Bee after emerging victorious at the Santa Barbara County Spelling Bee on Thursday, March 9, organized and held by the Santa Barbara County Education Office.
Out of the total 57 4th-8th graders who participated in the annual spelling competition, two students from the elementary school division and two from the junior high division came out on top.
Carpinteria Middle School 6th grader Emiliano Jimenez took first place in the elementary division with the winning word of “guillotine,” saying he “felt really proud” of himself for the win. And in the junior high division, first place went to St. Raphael Catholic School 8th grader Luke Johansen with the word “ecstasy.” Johansen told organizers he was “shocked” to bring home the coveted first-place title.
“I did not know I would do that well,” Johansen shared.
Second place in the elementary school division went to 4th grader Kelly Chen of Kellogg Elementary School for “deciduous,” and third place went to 6th grader Jacob Mintz of Vieja Valley Elementary School with the word “oxidize.”
The junior high second place winner, who requested to remain anonymous, earned their place with the word “unappeasable,” and 8th grader Andrew Kozlov rounded out the podium in third place with “vaporize.”
“We are so proud of the students who diligently prepared to compete in this year’s Spelling Bee,” said County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Susan Salcido. “They demonstrate a strong commitment to excelling in their schoolwork, and sheer courage to show up and participate in a public competition. A big thank-you to the many teachers, schools, volunteers, and parents who support this terrific event.”
The first- and second-place winners from each division are invited to compete in the California State Spelling Bee on Saturday, May 13, in Stockton at the San Joaquin County Office of Education.
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