Press Release

Orange Unified’s First Spanish Language Spelling Bee Team Wins Competition

Orange, CA – December 5, 2016 – Orange Unified is proud to announce that Villa Park High School’s first Spanish language spelling bee team won first place at the 2016 Inland Empire’s High School Spanish Spelling Bee on December 3. The team – named Spelling Beests - is the first non-English spelling bee team in Orange Unified.

Coached by Tibisay Moreno and Brenda Ochoa, the 10 students who were selected to compete were Roderick Bahena, Robert Bilodeau, Joanna Enriquez, Christina Hernandez, Daniel Kim, Martin Mendoza, Reina Miron, Nick Rosen, Daniela Salazar, and Benjamin Martinez, who ultimately spelled the winning word.

“I am very appreciative of the hard work and dedication of Mrs. Moreno and Mrs. Ochoa in preparing our students to represent Villa Park High School,” stated Principal Ken Miller, Ed.D. “Our strong Spelling Bee team is another reflection of the power of student connectedness and the SPARTAN WAY here at Villa Park High School.”

Spelling Beests team members ranged from ninth to twelfth grade and included native and non-native Spanish speaking students. Eligibility to compete was based on current enrollment in a Spanish language course and a commitment to work during lunch and after school to memorize about 690 advanced Spanish vocabulary words.

The second annual Inland Empire’s High School Spanish Spelling Bee Contest took place at California Baptist University in Riverside, California. Students competed against 16 other schools from in and around Southern California’s Inland Empire. Winners received cash prizes to be used for educational expenses, including technology devices and school supplies.

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The Orange Unified School District educates approximately 28,000 K-12 grade students in the Cities of Orange, Villa Park, Anaheim, Garden Grove, Santa Ana, and unincorporated county areas.  In partnership with our community, we provide a safe, equitable, and innovative culture of learning for each scholar to have a competitive EDGE as a leader.