KZN pupil spells it like it is

Grade 6 girl places first in na­tional com­pe­ti­tion


A KZN pupil brought hon­our to the prov­ince af­ter tak­ing on some of the best “spell­ing bees” in the coun­try and emerged vic­to­ri­ous.

By cor­rectly spell­ing the word “guil­lo­tine”, Neha Har­rib­ha­jan, a Grade 6 pupil from Park­side Pri­mary in Queens­burgh, clinched the hon­our dur­ing the Na­tional Spell­ing Bee Cham­pi­onship in Pre­to­ria last week­end.

For her ef­forts, Neha, 11, will re­ceive a fully funded schol­ar­ship, (ex­clud­ing ac­com­mo­da­tion) at any Monash Univer­sity once she ma­tric­u­lates, a tablet, tro­phy and other prizes.

Neha’s fa­ther Ni­raj Har­rib­ha­jan de­scribed her win as an “over achieve­ment”. “I’m so proud of her. She re­ally put in the ef­fort,” said Har­rib­ha­jan, a graphic de­signer by pro­fes­sion.

Har­rib­ha­jan ad­mit­ted it was stress­ful for Neha to jug­gle prepa­ra­tions for the com­pe­ti­tion and ex­ams but it was worth it in the end.

“I helped her pre­pare for the con­test at home while des­ig­nated sub­ject teach­ers worked with her in school. She was also tested by an of­fi­cial from the KZN ed­u­ca­tion de­part­ment.”

Har­rib­ha­jan said while a list of words was pro­vided, ini­tially dur­ing the elim­i­na­tion round pupils were tested on un­seen words. There were three can­di­dates in the fi­nal. Neha said when she re­alised she had won, the ex­cite­ment over­whelmed her and she be­came emo­tional.

Two other KZN pupils, Jor­dan Goven­der from Fairhaven Pri­mary in Chatsworth and Lumka Cele from Thamela Pri­mary in Um­lazi also made it to the fi­nals.

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