Levi Budd is hoping to get the word levidrome into the dictionary.

Looking back at Saanich’s 2017- November and December

The most read stories online in November and December

  • Dec. 27, 2017 10:52 a.m.

November

B.C. boy looks to add new word to dictionary

A Victoria second-grader fixed a gaping hole in the English language by inventing a new word.

Now he wants your help getting it into the dictionary.

Defined by Levi Budd, 6, a levidrome is a word that contains the same lettering but spells a different word when written backwards.

When Levi discovered palindromes earlier this year – words or phrases like “Bob” that read the same forward and backward – he just couldn’t get enough.

“He loves language, he loves reading, he’s a voracious reader,” said dad Lucky Budd.

It all started with the boy’s six-foot stuffed snake he aptly named Snakey Bob. The Grade 2 student at St. Michaels University School burned through discovering the usual suspects in palindromes: mom, dad, racecar. Then curiosity caught him. What about reward and drawer, or stressed and desserts? How does one describe those?

When faced with the question, his dad sought an answer. He didn’t find one, so they thought, why not make a new word?

Lucky contacted Webster, and learned to get a word in the dictionary it has to become widely used. So the duo embarked on a project. They crafted a video and set out to utilize social media to get levidrome, named for the boy, into the dictionary.

With 3,000 views on YouTube in the first three weeks, the concept is reaching teachers nationwide. Much like Levi’s classroom at SMUS, they pinned boards to their walls where students add levidromes routinely. The push is also offering young people a positive perspective on social media, Lucky pointed out.

“People are spreading the word, because it’s really cool,” he said.

Running back propels Spectrum into first Subway Bowl final

Spectrum Thunder’s senior boys football team made history as it took the field for the Subway Bowl Tier 2 provincial championship.

Spectrum qualified by winning its first ever playoff game, the Tier 2 semifinal, a 28-12 win over the Frank Hurt Hornets of Surrey.

“Going to our first Subway Bowl has had a real good buzz around the school, everybody’s excited to go,” coach Darren Vaux said. “It shows that there’s more than one place to play football in Saanich.”

The Thunder were the final Island team still playing football this season. The Mount Douglas Rams fell in the AAA quarterfinal to 19-14 to the New Westminster Hyacks while the AAA Belmont Bulldogs did not advance to the playoffs.

Grade 12 rookie running back Brandon Robbins, a converted soccer player, led the Thunder in the semifinal with three touchdowns and 158 yards rushing, said Vaux.

“Robbins just joined the team this year and has been an incredible find for us,” Vaux said. “He’s given us an identity as a running football team, and we’re playing some pretty nasty defence, it’s been good all year.”

Grade 11 quarterback Cam Ross scampered 60 yards for a late touchdown to seal the win. Grade 12 Sahjun Sehmi was noticeably strong on special teams and defence as he ran in a two-point conversion he recovered from an errant snap on a point after attempt, and had an interception, Vaux said. Nic Lockwood also stood out at linebacker and on the offensive line.

The Eric Hamber Griffins upended the Thunder 28-21 in the Subway Bowl.

Saanich girl struck by vehicle on way to school

A Saanich girl was struck by a vehicle Dec. 20 at the intersection of Ash Road and Torquay Drive.

Leila Bui, an 11-year-old girl in Grade 6 at Arbutus middle school, was hit by Mercedes sports utility vehicle travelling eastbound on Ash Road, while crossing Torquay Drive near the crosswalk. Saanich Police report she was thrown into the path of a second car which is now believed to have stopped before it struck the girl.

She was hit coming out of her own driveway, in front of her house. It’s unknown if she was on the crosswalk or near it.

The girl’s grandfather, Andy Bui, said she was crossing the street to be picked up on the other side of Ash Road for a ride to school when she was struck.

She was rushed by ambulance to Victoria General Hospital in serious condition.

Bui’s uncle, Gavin Aitken of Saanich, said Leila underwent surgery on to stop internal bleeding and had an MRI to assess her neck and spine.

“She has a neck fracture but her spine seems to be OK,” he said. “We are so relieved about that as any serious injury to her spine would have been devastating to her outcome.”

Bui said he believes Ash Road should be a four-way intersection. The speed limit is 50km/h on Ash Road, which does not have stop signs at the intersection with Torquay. Motorists do have a stop sign at Ash when approaching on Torquay.

Bui said he called Saanich to complain about one tall arbutus tree in particular that leans over Ash Road and blocks the view to the entrance to the intersection when approaching eastbound.

The District of Saanich released a statement saying the pedestrian crossing and intersection of Ash and Torquay were already scheduled to be reviewed in January.

“A request to make improvements to the pedestrian crossing at the Ash Road and Torquay Drive intersection was recently brought to the attention of the municipality from the Gordon Head Residents Association,” said spokesperson Megan Catalano.

Window a reflection of principal’s impact on Tillicum

With her signature hair barrette, glasses and pendant, the image of Lori Burley is easy to recognize in the new stained glass window overlooking the Tillicum elementary staff room.

Burley died in August at 61 years old, and the stained window is one of many monuments recently created in her honour.

When the popular principal took ill in June, many assumed she would return. But when students returned to Tillicum elementary in September, it was the first time in 12 years principal Burley wasn’t there to greet them

“She was a leader, I wanted this [window] to honour [Burley], and to dedicate it to all principals,” said Tillicum art teacher Doug Wilson, who created 11 stained glass windows in the library for the school’s 100th anniversary in 2015.

Behind Burley’s image on the window are the outspread wings of an eagle, which symbolizes protection and which became an important concept in her final weeks. Standing with Burley are four students together on an open book. Below the book is the word ‘Leadership.’

“The window hangs in the staff room to inspire the staff,” said teacher Jocelyn Cathcart, who co-designed the window with Wilson.

The idea is that Burley also looks out from the window, symbolically, onto the students playing in the Tillicum field and over the outdoor classroom she commissioned.

This month School District 61 approved the renaming of the Tillicum library as the Lori Burley Learning Commons. There’s also a new set of chairs and books (with her name inscribed in them) in the commons to celebrate Burley’s advocacy of literature.

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Spectrum Thunder running back Brandon Robbins carries the ball against the Eric Hamber Griffins in the Subway Bowl. Photo by Chris Wilson

Saanich Police officers investigate the crash scene where a pedestrian, an 11-year-old girl, was struck by a car on Ash Road. The girl was crossing the road to catch a ride to school, said her grandfather.

Tillicum elementary teachers Jocelyn Cathcart and Doug Wilson collaborated on the stained glass window dedicated to Lori Burley, the school’s principal of 12 years who died in August.

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