Hamilton-Holmes Middle School eighth grader Ben Ratliff was named 2014 district spelling bee champion for King William County Public Schools. Ratliff won the spelling bee by correctly spelling the word “complacency.” As the district winner, Ratliff received a Webster's Dictionary from the Richmond Times-Dispatch. He will compete at the 40th annual Richmond Times-Dispatch Regional Spelling Bee, scheduled for Saturday, March 8, 2014 at the Library of Virginia. The winner of the Regional Bee will receive a $1,500 scholarship and an all-expenses-paid trip to the National Bee, courtesy of the Times-Dispatch.
The KWCPS spelling bee, coordinated by Kim Tupponce, HHMS Gifted Resource Teacher, was held at Hamilton-Holmes Middle School on January 14, 2014. Alexis Scott, Reading Specialist, served as the pronouncer for the bee. Bee judges were Kim Napier, Assistant Principal of Hamilton-Holmes, Rachel Ball, Assistant Principal of Acquinton Elementary, and Jennifer Perry, Guidance Counselor at King William High School. KWCPS Superintendent Dr. Mark Jones and Assistant Superintendent Stacy Johnson were also in attendance at the Bee.
In order to participate in the county spelling bee, students from Hamilton-Holmes Middle School and Acquinton Elementary School first competed at the school level. The top five spellers from each grade level in grades three through eight were invited to compete in the KWCPS spelling bee.