20 May 2021

Junior Debating in 2021

Article by Mr Michael Tod

Junior Debating in 2021

The Debating Association of Victoria Schools Competition is the largest English-language debating competition in the world. This challenging but rewarding ‘sport for the mind’ has proved quite popular this year, with Saint Ignatius College able to field two teams in D grade (for Years 7-9). 

In Term One, the College was represented by Year 7 students Isabelle Hewitt and Jackie Hiemstra, and Year 8 student Damon Maffescioni in Round One of the Online Competition. This was the first debate of the year and students were both excited and nervous about delivering their 4-5 minute speeches.

Our topic was ‘That the government should subsidise tourism in regional Victoria’ and we took the affirmative position. 

Isabelle opened our team’s case in a strong and confident manner, speaking with real conviction in her first appearance in a debate for Saint Ignatius College. Our second speaker, Jackie, eloquently rebutted the opposition’s key arguments and then proceeded to advance the team’s case with an impressive display of oratory skill. Damon, our third speaker, did a wonderful job countering the opposition’s main points and providing a compelling and pithy summation of our own case. 

The adjudicator praised both teams’ competent delivery and enthusiasm, awarding the victory to Saint Ignatius College, with Jackie named Best Speaker in the debate.

Congratulations to our junior debaters for this wonderful performance in what promises to be an enriching and rewarding competition. The support of all parents involved is also greatly appreciated.

Michael Tod  Learning and Teaching Coordinator - Debating (Years 7 - 9)