EducationLocal

Biko Sheridan Wins 38th Annual Washington Informer Spelling Bee

District Fifth Grader Becomes Prestigious Competition's Youngest Champion

Biko Sheridan, 11, a fifth grade student at Mundo Verde Public Charter School in Northwest, won the 38th Annual Washington Informer Spelling Bee — besting 30 competitors from other District schools to emerge as the youngest person in the history of the spelling bee to win the citywide contest.

NBC4 and the District Knowledge Network, an affiliate of OCTFME, aired the competition on April 19 which took place earlier at the studios of the DC Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment [OCTFME] in Northeast on Feb. 29.

Normally, Biko would go on to represent the District at the Scripps National Spelling Bee originally scheduled to take place in National Harbor at the Gaylord Hotel during the week of May 24. But the event — that is, the nation finals — has been canceled due to the coronavirus and ongoing stay-at-home orders.

Biko, following his victory, talked about his pride in winning.

“I do feel great especially because I didn’t think I could do it,” he said. Chris Sheridan, Biko’s father, grinning ear-to-ear while his son accepted congratulations and posed for pictures, expressed elation at his son’s accomplishment.

Biko Sheridan, a fifth grader at the Mundo Verde Public Charter School and the winner of the 38th annual Washington Informer Spelling Bee, poses with second-place winner Amni Amin, a sixth grade student at the School Without Walls @ Francis Stevens, following the competition on Feb. 29 at the studios of the DC Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment in northeast D.C. (Brigette White/The Washington Informer)
Biko Sheridan, a fifth grader at the Mundo Verde Public Charter School and the winner of the 38th annual Washington Informer Spelling Bee, poses with second-place winner Amni Amin, a sixth grade student at the School Without Walls @ Francis Stevens, following the competition on Feb. 29 at the studios of the DC Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment in northeast D.C. (The Washington Informer)

“I am still in shock,” Sheridan said. “I knew he was going to do it when he was in the top 10. Biko studied very hard for this. Honestly, I am proud of all of the kids. They represented themselves, their schools and their families very well. There needs to be more competitions that feature academic stars like Biko.”

Amni Amin, a sixth grader at the School Without Walls @ Francis Stevens in Northwest, took second place.

Biko becomes the latest winner in a competition which started during the school year of 1981-1982 as a result of the collaborative efforts of Dr. Mary White, a DCPS senior administrator, and Dr. Calvin W. Rolark Sr., the founder and former publisher of The Washington Informer.

Washington Informer Publisher Denise Rolark Barnes has continued to lead the effort which has since totaled more than 2,000 students representing 200 schools as participants in the spelling bee.

The event, long hosted at the studios of NBC4 in Northwest, found a new venue for this year’s competition at OCTFME’s studios.

“We had production scheduling conflicts within the mandatory spelling bee taping period,” Donna Weston, vice president of community affairs at NBC4, said. “We asked OCTFME if they would co-produce it with us. They very graciously and enthusiastically agreed.”

Michael Mitchell, chief communications officer for OCTFME, said his agency relished the opportunity to lend a helping hand.

“We were very happy to do this,” Mitchell said. “I was happy to work with Donna Weston and Denise Rolark Barnes to make this happen and we look forward to doing this in the future.”

This year’s spelling bee had the services of citywide coordinator Jason Moore, [word]. pronouncer David Zahren and Dr. Elizabeth E. Primas, program manager of the National Newspaper Publishers Association’s “Every Student Succeeds Act” — an educational program geared toward improving academic performance for K-12 students. Author Jonathan Lewis and Simone Coyle, a local attorney, served as judges for the event, along with Primas and Moore.

Sponsors included: Safeway Foundation, Washington Gas, Pepco, Toyota, Giant Food, Comcast/Xfinity and the Washington Nationals. Tracey Funn, manager of corporate contributions & supplier diversity for Washington Gas, attended the event and stressed the company’s strong support for the event.

“We value education as one of our key focus groups,” Funn said. “We support The Washington Informer and encourage everyone to focus on reading and spelling.”

Tags
Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Back to top button

My News Matters to me - Washington Informer Donations

Be a Part of The Washington Informer Legacy

A donation of your choice empowers our journalists to continue the work to better inform, educate and empower you through technology and resources that you use.

Click Here Today to Support Black Press and be a part of the Legacy!

Subscribe today for free and be the first to have news and information delivered directly to your inbox.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact
Close

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker