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Spelling Bee Queen Debbie

One by one, they all fell out of contention, victims to words such as "effervescent", "succinct" and "diphtheria". It all came down to the last two survivors of Singapore Sports School's inaugural Spelling Bee - Debbie Soh from Secondary 1C and Nur Liyana from Secondary 1D. It was a battle of the two Secondary 1s and one word, "plebeian", separated the queen bee from her challenger. As a noun, the word is often used as a reference to common people as an adjective, it means common or vulgar. When Nur Liyana failed to spell it out correctly, Debbie went in for the kill, spelling each letter out with clarity and sealed her title as Singapore Sports School's Spelling Bee Queen.

Debbie competed against seven other schoolmates, most of who were older than her, but she did not let the age difference or her lack of rest from counting against her. For those who are unaware, Debbie and another spelling bee finalist, Secondary 3D's Lee Mei Shuang, flew in from China at 5am on 22 August 2011, having competed at the China Junior Open Synchronised Swimming Championships. Debbie had won a Bronze medal in the solo category, while Mei Shuang partnered Crystal Yap to a Silver medal in the duet event. Yet, both girls shrugged off the effects of travel to participate in the competition and still managed to do well with Debbie winning and Mei Shuang reaching the final four.

Debbie is no longer a plebeian, far from that. She is now the Queen Bee.