Visalia student spells his way to nationals

(Tulare County Office of Education)

Sarvadnya Kadam readies to go to the national spelling bee after winning the Tulare County Spelling Championship

TULARE COUNTY – Seventh grade student Sarvadnya Kadam won himself the Tulare County Spelling Championship and a chance to compete in a national spelling bee after he successfully dished out the winning word “ratatouille.”

The 25th annual Tulare County Spelling Championship, held by the Tulare County Office of Education on March 7, witnessed Sarvadnya Kadam take the honor as first place winner. The seventh-grade student from Oak Grove Elementary School in Visalia secured victory by correctly spelling the French vegetable dish “ratatouille.” This win is taking him even further to Tulare County at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in May.

“Through the program, hundreds of students at school site competitions are building vocabulary skills and their self-confidence in speaking before an audience,” Tulare County Superintendent of Schools Tim Hire said via press release.

In second place was Isla Jay, a seventh-grade student from Sequoia Middle School in Porterville. Yunnuen Cruz secured third place as an eighth-grade student from Live Oak Middle School in Tulare.

The spelling master was Scot Hillman, chairman emeritus of JDH in Tulare, which is a feed manufacturer. This year’s judges were lead judge Carlyn Lambert, a retired Visalia Unified administrator, Tulare County Supervisor Eddie Valero and Superintendent Hire. Hillman and Lambert have served the spelling championship in their respective roles since its creation in 1999.

Hire and the Visalia Times-Delta/Tulare Advance-Register annually partner to sponsor the event. The partnership supports the entry fees and travel of the Tulare County student who competes at the National Spelling Bee.

“We are delighted to celebrate our 25th year of partnership with the Visalia Times-Delta/Tulare Advance-Register to elevate spelling in Tulare County,” Hire said.

These competitors and alternates are among the best spellers from 101 public and private schools throughout the county. The event was also broadcasted on Zoom so all friends and family could support the students.

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