Rome City Schools’ best spellers put their thinking caps on during the system’s annual Spelling Bee on February 5. Educators, family and friends gathered at the RCS Central Office to watch some of the brightest children go head-to-head in a spelling contest.

Student representatives from all elementary schools and Rome Middle School took turns spelling words until the last one was left standing. Mason Cochran, one of the West End student representatives, was named the winner of the 2019 Rome City Schools Spelling Bee by correctly spelling the word hilarious.

Cochran and runner-up, Samuel Metzger from North Heights Elementary, made it to the last round of the spelling bee where they took turns spelling until their counterpart missed a letter. Cochran will represent Rome City Schools in the regional Bee held at Georgia Highlands College later this month. Metzger will serve as alternate in case the winner is unable to compete.

Representatives from the other schools include:

-Anna K. Davie – Alexis Hughes and Isaiah Brown (alternate)

-East Central – Audrey Claire Loveman and Hannah Huynh (alternate)

-Elm Street – Camdyn Connell and Hannah Stendalen (alternate)

-North Heights – Jayce Donaldson and Samuel Metzger (alternate)

-West Central – Jaziah Mathis and Luna Prieto (alternate)

-West End – Abbie Thornton and Mason Cochran (alternate)

-Rome Middle School – Lauren Cornwell and Jakiya Strozier (alternate)

“The other night, my parents were helping me by giving me words to spell,” said Cochran. “I read a lot and whenever I see words, I just remember them.”

“We are so proud of him and I told him he was going to win,” smiled Steven Cochran, Mason’s father.

“We are very proud of all of the students here today,” said Superintendent Louis Byars after he presented Cochran with a certificate and West End Elementary with the RCS Spelling Bee Banner to display in their school. “They made it through many of the rounds, which is impressive for all of our students here. They should be very proud of the way they performed today.”