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Spectacular Spellers Shine During Lillian A. Dassori Elementary Spelling Bee

The Martin County School District held its 55th annual Lillian A. Dassori Elementary Spelling Bee on Thursday, January 14, 2021.  The event was held in a virtual format as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Mr. Willie Gore, Assistant Principal of Hobe Sound Elementary School; Ms. Debra George, Coordinator of Title I; and Mr. Larry Green, retired Martin County principal, served as judges for this year’s Bee.  Ms. Shannon Blount, the District’s Coordinator of Reading and Language Arts, was the enunciator for the competition. 


Named after Lillian A. Dassori, a founding member and charter president of the Soroptomist International of Stuart, the Bee provides Martin County’s elementary students with an opportunity to practice spelling and public speaking skills while also increasing their vocabularies. 


Five students and one alternate from each of the District’s twelve elementary schools were eligible to participate in this year’s competition. Fifth-grader Roman Tarpley of Jensen Beach Elementary School correctly spelled "terra-cotta" to earn first-place honors. He will advance to the regional competition with the hopes of ultimately competing at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in June.  


“The Lillian A. Dassori Elementary Spelling Bee is always one of the highlights of the school year in Martin County,” Superintendent John D. Millay shared. “We know that literacy and students’ command of language is so important. It is always a joy to watch our youngest learners demonstrate their abilities during this friendly competition.”


The District would like to congratulate all of this year’s participants, with a special kudos going out to this year’s winners:

  • 12th place – Aliyah Pascual, Port Salerno Elementary School

  • 11th place – Blake Palombi, Bessey Creek Elementary School

  • 10th place – Eli Perez Mercado, Indiantown Middle School (5th grade)

  • 9th place – Jackson Hayden, Jensen Beach Elementary School

  • 8th place – Landon Nail, Bessey Creek Elementary School

  • 7th place – Wendy Chiroy Mazariegos, Warfield Elementary School

  • 6th place – Matthew Jarrell, Jensen Beach Elementary School

  • 5th place – Kannon Brill, Jensen Beach Elementary School

  • 4th place – Alex Paez, Palm City Elementary School

  • 3rd place – Cameron Lewis, J.D. Parker Elementary School

  • 2nd place – Morgan Ray, Bessey Creek Elementary School

  • 1st place – Roman Tarpley, Jensen Beach Elementary School