P-E-R-N-I-C-I-O-U-S was the word misspelt by Matthew McLaughlin of Campion College. The 11-year-old was one of the final two contestants of the St Andrew leg of The Gleaner's Children's Own Spelling Bee held at The Gleaner Company's Kingston head office. The word passed to spellmate, Christian Allen of Ardenne High, and with his hand on McLaughlin's shoulder, he corrected the word and went on to spell the winning word, T-A-B-L-E-A-U.
"First, I want to thank the Lord, and Reverend Glen Archer, my parents and my aunt; they have been there for me," Allen told The Gleaner last Friday, holding his trophy with pride. "As for nationals, with God's help, I will do exceptionally well.
The top three spots were copped by boys, trained by Archer, and his reaction was that of pride.
"It's good to see boys in the top three. At a time when they say boys aren't excelling, this can be used as a good example to the contrary."
When asked about the win, Archer said, "We always anticipate success, but don't believe we must win."
1.Christian Allen - Ardenne High
2. Matthew McLaughlin - Campion College
3. Joshua Grant - Ardenne Prep
4. Nicole Johnson - St Andrew High
5. Renee Ann Meeks - Morris Knibb Prep
Winning Word: T-A-B-L-E-A-U