Canadian Kids Headed for 2012 National School Scrabble Championship

2012 Natl. School Scrabble Championship

After taking top honours at the recent Toronto School Scrabble® Championship, four grade eight students from the GTA’s Bayview Glen School will soon be heading south to Orlando, Florida for the 2012 National School Scrabble Championship.

The annual event, which runs April 13-14, routinely hosts about 150 similarly talented kids who journey from across North America to vie for the Championship’s $10,000 prize. (Last year, Jackson Smylie & Alex Li, two youngsters from Toronto, took the prize on behalf of their school.)

Most of this year’s participants, who range from 9 to 14 years old, have come up through the ranks in their school’s Scrabble Program. (Educators in over 20,000 schools in Canada and the U.S. support the School Scrabble Program.) All of the competitors must earn the right to compete at the two-day Orlando event by first notching up successes under their own program and then going on to win rated, school-level tournaments in their communities.

Even at this young age, they are among NA’s best players. In fact, 29 students with official rankings from the North American Scrabble Players Association (NASPA) will be showing off their skills at the 2012 event. Many of the players, who are successful in Orlando, will go on to compete in other top-level events, such as the annual National Scrabble Championship, which include adult players.

For more information about NSSC events, visit the organization’s website.

UPDATE, April 15 — Congratulations to Andy Hoang and Erik Salgado, grade 8 students at Massachusetts’ Salem Middle School, on their win at the 2012 National School Scrabble Championship. This is not the first time the dynamic duo has claimed the $10,000 prize — they also won in 2009. Although one other competitor has been a two-time winner, Hoang and Salgado are the first team to repeat the win with the same partner.

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