27 August 2020

Senior Debating Update

Article by Ms Andrea Dart

Senior Debating Update

Our Senior Debating Team once again represented Saint Ignatius College with pride and distinction in Round 4 of the DAV’s A Grade competition. The secret topic was announced one hour prior to the debate and our students took the affirmative position, arguing “That we should implement a universal basic income.” 

With a shared and structured Google Doc at the ready we held our own Zoom conference to plan the line of argument and develop our case. The teamwork during this time was exceptional and efficient. Research was conducted and supporting evidence quickly gathered. Jesse Hart, Luke Lawson and William Palmer worked steadily to help our 3 speakers develop their material. Reflecting on experiences from the third round, the team focused on being well prepared to close off our opponents’ arguments with a carefully developed model. We then joined the DAV’s Zoom conference to take on Strathcona Girls’ Grammar School for the fixture.

Matilda Crosgrove opened the team’s case very strongly by presenting a clearly articulated approach to the implementation of a universal basic income to be funded by a wealth tax. This was well supported by her description of the poverty cycle and its effects on the disadvantaged. As second speaker, Noah Gullan offered some solid rebuttal points and then expanded on the UBI’s potential to reduce participation in crime driven by desperation and to promote empowered participation in the broader economy. The team’s case was concluded by William Bothe who spoke convincingly about the importance of honoring human dignity to elevate the poverty stricken from their plight and used his knowledge of economic principles to rebut Strathcona’s arguments about inflation.

The adjudicator commented that both sides had presented good points about the social aspects of the UBI and concluded that the SICG Team’s case had delivered a more compelling characterization of the relevant social problems. Addressing the economic theme, she also concluded that our students’ arguments about stimulating participation in the economy were made more convincingly than those of our opponents. With Best Speaker honours jointly shared by Matilda Crosgrove and Noah Gullan, Saint Ignatius College was awarded a one point win over Strathcona.

It was very rewarding for our students to conclude the shortened competition with such a strong performance. Out of 22 schools we finished in 8th spot, equal 3rd on points with 4 other schools. This is Saint Ignatius College’s best overall result so far in A Grade Debating and a clear reflection of the team’s collective efforts and commitment to learning new skills. Congratulations to all of our Senior Debaters and well done on your efforts and achievements in 2020!

Ms Andrea Dart Senior Debating Co-ordinator