Can you spell? But can you spell in Sesotho?

One of the young contestants participating in the Sesoth Spelling Bee. PHOTO: PULANE CHOANE

The brightest sparks in our classrooms around the FS province will compete in a first of its kind spelling bee in the province tomorrow.

Learners from grade 4-6 will show off their spelling competency in a Sesotho language spelling bee on 9 September 2016 at Aldam Estate in Ventersburg.

Free State Sport, Arts and Culture MEC  Mathabo Leeto says “Sesotho is one of the official languages in the Free State Province, and therefore no effort must be spared to preserve and build the language”.

This department tabled a provincial language policy last year that promises that Free Staters can now demand government services and communication in Sesotho, English, Afrikaans and isiXhosa – as spoken by the majority of residents. The spelling bee is, according to Leeto, is the first step in realising this promise.

The bee formed part of the department’s program to celebrate International Literacy Day. Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa tweeted – commenting on #InternationalLiteracyDay that “There’s no such thing as a child who doesn’t like to read, there are only kids who haven’t found the right book.”

The winner of the Spelling Bee Competition will represent the province in Pretoria on 1 October. – Pulane Choane