Arizona Educational Foundation

Thunderbirds Charities Awards $18,700 to Sponsor State Spelling Bee

The Arizona Educational Foundation is the recipient of an $18,700 grant from Thunderbirds Charities to support the Arizona State Spelling Bee. The student who wins the Arizona State Spelling Bee goes on to represent Arizona as the official Arizona State Spelling Champion in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.  Arizona has one of the largest spelling bee programs in the nation, with close to 300,000 students competing each year from public, private, and homeschools statewide.

“Managing a program of this magnitude is no small feat,” says Matthew Feller, Arizona State Bee Director. “Having support from Thunderbirds Charities will go a long way in ensuring students have an exceptional experience.” Kim Graham, AEF Executive Director, echoes that sentiment. “We are so grateful for the support from Thunderbirds Charities. They do so much to support education in Maricopa and Pinal counties and we are truly honored that they have chosen to support this vital academic opportunity for students.”

The Arizona State Spelling Bee is scheduled, COVID conditions permitting, for Saturday, March 20th, at the Madison Center for the Arts in Phoenix. To allow for social distancing and COVID safety the event will not be open to the public this year. “We are watching the metrics closely,” Feller states. “We do have a backup plan for a virtual Bee if conditions are not improved, but we’re hopeful that recent vaccine distribution efforts will improve conditions and that by March we will be able to provide an in-person Spelling Bee experience.”

Arizona Educational Foundation

This grant is part of the Fall 2020 cycle. View a list of all Recent Grantees.