The 2020 Scripps National Spelling Bee has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Many eighth grade student spellers are devastated at the news of the national competition being canceled. This is the only the second time since its origin that the Scripps National Spelling Bee has been canceled. The first time was during World War II.
“The students have dedicated time and effort to their passion for learning. They should be proud of all they have accomplished by winning spelling bees at the classroom, school and regional level,” said Paige Kimble, executive director of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, on the spelling bee’s website. “Nevertheless, our first priority has to be the health and well-being of our spellers and their families and the hundreds of staff and spectators that come together for Bee Week.”
After being unsure of how long the pandemic will last, the competition’s organizers felt it was best to cancel the spelling bee due to the fact that no one knows when public gatherings will be advised again.
“Our hearts go out to the spellers who won’t get their final shot at winning because of the pandemic and the difficult decisions it is prompting us to make,” Kimble said. “They are now part of a widely expanding group of children and adults who are missing out on opportunities due to the coronavirus.”
The 2021 Scripps National Spelling Bee is scheduled to take place in National Harbor, Maryland from June 1-3, 2021.