Real Warner crowned St. Anthony’s College Spelling Bee Champ

Twelve-year old, Real Warner, was crowned champion of the St. Anthony’s College Annual Spelling Bee Competition Lower School division when the 2019 edition buzzed off at the school’s gymnasium recently.

The Form One word wizz successfully conquered a myriad of challenging words and over a dozen other contestants to capture the category’s winning prize. Warner’s consistency surpassed his closest and more experienced rivals, Jorel Clement and Ricardo Williams (both of Form 2), who placed second and third overall respectively.

In the final round, the trio showed class by making light work of mind-boggling words such as ‘xylitol’, ‘nasturtium’, ‘lobscouse’, ‘oblivescence’ and ‘notacanthus’ among others. After acing this list, the judges – led by the institution’s Head of English Department Mrs. Jael Jones – then dusted off a ‘Masters-List’ of tricky everyday words.

In the end, the words ‘receipt’ and ‘occurred’ got the better of Williams and Clement, as  Warner sailed to victory. His title-winning performance was heavily backed by his chanting classmates, applauding mother, Natalie Figueroa-Warner, and Principal Mr. Maurice Inniss.

“It was tough but I made sure to put God in when I study,” said Real smiling from ear to ear. “I was a bit nervous because this was my first year and I was up against some of my older schoolmates. Now, I’m ecstatic. Spelling has not only helped me to spell, but it has increased by vocabulary and my writing skills. I’m looking forward to next year and may even challenge myself further by attending other Spelling competitions.”

 TSTT’s Senior Manager Corporate Communications, Marsha Caballero, congratulated all of the participants and reinforced that the gift of education is invaluable as it opens doors to infinite opportunities and success.

“We recognise that in this fast paced world, it is critical to put measures in place that help mould the children. They are the future of our nation and we need to ensure they are equipped to go out in the world and benefit from the many prospects that await them. At bmobile, we remain intent on investing into initiatives which help educate our young citizens,” stated Caballero.

TSTT has continuously played significant roles in the elevation of literacy within the education sector. During every July-August vacation, employees pool together resources to sponsor hundreds of needy children throughout the twin-island republic with stationery, textbooks and other school supplies through the Company’s Book Buddies programme. Additionally, they recently partnered with United Way to refurbish the library at Fifth Company Anglican Primary School in an effort to increase literacy in rural parts of T&T.

Following Warner’s triumph, the Form Three and Four classes began their journey to crowning an Upper School champion. After a tight contest, Johan Allen retained the division’s top honours ahead of eventual runner-up Jezreel Marshall and third placed Vede Boodram.

 Feature speaker at this year’s Spelling Bee, Sandee Bengochea (Director of Sandee Communications National Spelling Bee Competition), was pleased with the strong turnout of competitors and the level of commitment shown.

“I applaud these young men for the determination they have shown towards learning these challenging words. This is what we need in society, the recognition of male success stories, because we’re fed up of the negative headlines that plague us daily. Initiatives such as these, courtesy the school, bmobile and the other sponsors, go a long way in enhancing our literacy of our young people,” said Bengochea.


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