Education A National Roundup

Spelling Bee Back On in District Worried About Competition

By John Gehring — February 08, 2005 1 min read

A Rhode Island school district has reversed itself after deciding to cancel an annual spelling bee over concerns that the contest singled out students and could hurt the self-esteem of those who didn’t perform well.

The 3,770-student Lincoln district initially dropped the spelling bee for elementary and middle school students after some principals told district administrators they did not believe that the competition contributed to the development of all students. They also said it conflicted with the goals of the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

But after complaints from some parents, the district reversed its decision and will hold the competition on Feb. 17.

In a Feb. 2 statement, district leaders said that they “listened to concerns of some members of the community and revisited the decision.”

A version of this article appeared in the February 09, 2005 edition of Education Week