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High Point eighth-grader petitions Scripps National Spelling Bee

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HIGH POINT, N.C.-- A High Point eighth-grader is petitioning the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

Najet Alkadir wants the competition to be expanded to include high school students.

“It would make all the spellers happy,” Alkadir said. “We feel that our spelling doesn`t end in eighth grade, we could go on and continue our dream and our love for spelling.”

Alkadir started competing in spelling bees as a third grader. She trained for the competitions year round, and spent up to six hours a day studying from her Webster’s Dictionary.

Alkardir likened it to an athlete training for their sport.

“I would open the dictionary and study a lot, especially on weekends,” Alkadir said. “I spent all of the time in my room to study. I didn’t have sports, I didn`t go to after school activities.”

Now,  Alkadir doesn’t have anything to study for anymore.

The Ledford Middle School student took second place in regional competition, ending her spelling bee career for good.

“We are forced to drop our spelling lives once our year ends and have to jump into a whole new atmosphere,” Alkadir wrote in her petition to Scripps National Spelling Bee. “We have nothing to look forward to, nothing that we can hold as ours. We need your help to let us keep spelling!”

Alkadir has 1,000 signatures so far, both electronically and on paper. She hopes to collect 20,000 signatures before submitting it to Scripps National Spelling Bee.

You can sign Alkadir's petition here.