Scripps Spelling Bee / Channel 10 News
Parker 8th-grader Snigdha Nandipati became one of 50 semifinalists on Wednesday at the 2012 Scripps National Spelling Bee Contest. She earned her place out of the 278 contestants from across the United States, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Department of Defense Schools in Europe; also, the Bahamas, Canada, China, Ghana, Jamaica, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea.
All 278 contestants took a written spelling test on Tuesday in which contestants spelled 50 words, only 25 of which counted towards each speller’s preliminary score. Bee officials determined which 25 “score words” prior to May 29, but the score word status was not apparent to the contestants. These words were publically identified following round three and the spellers were given 1 point for each “score word” they spelled correctly.
Wednesday’s portion of the contest consisted of two rounds in which each student was given one word to spell orally in each round. The contestants would earn three points for spelling each word correctly. Following the third round, the points from the written test and the oral spelling rounds were tallied and the semifinalists were identified. A maximum of 31 points were available through the first three rounds.
Nandipati correctly spelled “ringent” in round two and “lahar” in round three. Her test results from round one were good enough to advance her on to the Semifinals live on ESPN2 beginning at 7am PST on Thursday, May 31. Francis Parker School will hold a viewing party for students, parents, faculty, staff and media inside Crivello Hall on the Linda Vista Campus from 7am to 8am. Nandipati will be one of the first spellers to compete in the 4th round.
Students who complete the Semifinal rounds will then compete in the Championship round that begins on Thursday evening at 5pm PST. The Championship round will also be aired live on ESPN.
Nandipati advanced to the semifinal round in 2011 competition as well, finishing 27th overall after being knocked out in the 5th round. Her spelling of the word 'kerystic' would come up just one letter different as she was tripped up on the 'y', using an 'i' instead.