Rules for local spelling bees

The Scripps National Spelling Bee provides rules for all levels of our competition from the classroom to our national stage.

2020 Rules for Local Spelling Bees

The Scripps National Spelling Bee encourages spellers, parents, teachers and spelling bee officials to read these rules prior to any local spelling bee.


Spellers and spellers' parents and teachers should check with their local spelling bee officials for the rules in effect in their area, as local spelling bee officials are encouraged but not required to use these rules. Spelling bee officials include the pronouncer, judges, coordinator and sponsor.


The Scripps National Spelling Bee has no authority over the conduct of local spelling bees and will not render judgments relating to their conduct or outcomes. Individuals bearing complaints about local spelling bees should register their concerns with local spelling bee officials. Decisions of local spelling bee officials are final.

Download the 2020 Rules for Local Spelling Bees




Contest Rules of the 2020 Scripps National Spelling Bee

The rules governing our national finals in National Harbor, Maryland, will be available on Wednesday, April 8.