Spelling Bee-Amos

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 17, 2012

County’s top speller earns third trip to regional competition

By Rita Howell

Batesville Junior High student Jaterrica Amos is Panola County’s top speller for the third year in a row.  She correctly spelled “animosity” to claim the championship in the annual Panola County Spelling Bee, held last Friday in the auditorium at Batesville Intermediate School.

Jatericca will return to represent Panola March 3 in the Scripps Mid-South Spelling Bee in Memphis, where she placed second last year from among 49 spellers representing counties in the tri-state area. The winner from the Mid-South Bee gets an expense-paid trip to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. later in the spring.

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Seven students, all having won bees at their schools, participated in the county competition last week.

Shaquita Gleaton, a seventh grader representing Pope School, placed second and Mya Morris, a fifth grader from Batesville Middle School, placed third. The winners received cash prizes.

Other participants were: Kenja Hicks, fifth grader from Crenshaw Elementary; Jaylen Gipson, fifth grader from Green Hill Elementary; D’Angelo Oliver, eighth grader from North Panola Junior High; and Tykiria Johnson, fourth grader from Como Elementary.

Jaterrica, daughter of Jacqueline and Terry Amos, is an eighth grader at Batesville Junior High School.
Retired teacher Geneva Baird coordinates the county bee.

In the 85-year history of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, three Batesville students have advanced to the national competition. Sisters Meg and Cherry Mathis represented the Mid-South from 2004-2008, and Mark Keating made the trip in 1962.