Wanganui High School defend CNI Title
On 13-14 April the 2013 Russell McVeagh Central North Island Regional Debating Championships were held at Palmerston North Boys’ High School. With sixteen teams from Wanganui, Palmerston North, and Marton taking part, this was the largest competition in recent years and one of high quality.
Over the course of the five preliminary rounds, students debated the motions “This House supports the establishment of charter schools in New Zealand”, “This House believes that New Zealand and Australia should militarily intervene in Fiji”, “This House believes that there should be equal primetime television coverage of men’s and women’s sports”, “This House believes that important medical decisions about children’s health should be made by doctors and not by their parents” and “This House believes we should prohibit all private donations to political campaigns.”
On Sunday afternoon the tournament was narrowed to semi-finals, with Wanganui High School B, Wanganui Collegiate, St Peter’s College A and Palmerston North Boys’ High School A all breaking on four wins. From two passionate and high quality debates on the motion “This House believes that the welfare system should aim to provide a comfortable lifestyle, rather than a lifestyle which is just above the poverty level”, Wanganui High School B and St Peter’s College A bested their opponents to make it to the Grand Final.
The Grand Final was held in the Boys’ High library on the topic “This House believes that graduates from New Zealand Universities should be required to work in New Zealand for a number of years after graduating.” The debate was entertaining, topical and closely fought, with Wanganui High School B declared the winners by a 2-1 split decision, winning the Hardie Boys Cup for an impressive third year in a row.
A series of awards were presented at the prize-giving.
Megan Chamberlain (Freyberg High School)
Liam Barber (Palmerston North Boys’ High School)
Avroneel Ghose (Palmerston North Boys’ High School)
Amman Merchant (Wanganui High School)
Callum Tatton (Palmerston North Boys’ High School)
Reserve to the CNI Team:
Gabrielle Penn (Wanganui High School)
Central North Island Team 2012:
Savanna Gaskill (Nga Tawa)
Lucy Robinson (Wanganui Collegiate)
Rhaz Solomon (Wanganui High School)
Best Speaker: Savanna Gaskell (Nga Tawa)
The adjudicators were all impressed by how enthusiastic and responsive to feedback the debaters were, even near the end of the gruelling and intense weekend. Thanks to all the teachers and families who came to support their teams. A special thanks to Palmerston North Boys’ High School for their invaluable help in hosting this year.
A final thanks to the adjudicators who travelled from Wellington for the weekend – Stephen Whittington, Udayan Mukherjee, Daniel Wilson, Emma Smith, Aric Shakur, Jake Brown and Elise Munden.
The Northland Russell McVeagh Regional Debating championships were held on Sunday the 17th of March at Whangarei Girls High School. Seven teams from five different schools competed in three limited preparation rounds of debating followed by a final.
All of the students coped well with the variety of topics which were set including streaming in secondary schools an quotas for women in the police force. It was excellent to see a lot of younger speakers participating in the tournament, many of whom showed a lot of promise.
Kerikeri High Schools 1 broke in first place to the final. However, the break for second position was extremely close with Kerikeri High School 2, Kerikeri High School 3 and Whangarei Boys High School all having the same amount of win points and very similar speaker points. Kerikeri High School 2 narrowly edged out Kerikeri High School 3 on speaker points, making it a Kerikeri High School 1 versus Kerikeri High School 2 final for the second year in a row.
The topic for the Grand Final was ‘”This House believes that important medical decisions about children’s heath should be made by doctors and not by their parents.” Both teams created extremely interesting and compelling arguments which meant that the audience and adjudicators thoroughly enjoyed the thought provoking debate. Kerikeri High School 1 were announced as the winners in a unanimous decision.
Thank you very much to Margaret Northey for hosting us at Whangarei Girls High School and to Mitchell Cooper, Aria Newfield and Sam Bookman for adjudicating.
Congratulations to all of the students who received awards:
Kerikeri High School 1
Kerikeri High School 2
Members of the Northland Team
Jesse Prendergast- Kerikeri High School
Lucy Ellingham- Kerikeri High School
Samantha Scahill- Kerikeri High School
Reserve to the Northland Team
Rachael Machado- Whangarei Girls High School
Cassy Osokin- Kerikeri High School
Brad Olsen- Whangarei Boys High School
Eva Pearson- Whangarei Girls High School
Meg Murray- Kerikeri High School
Jesse Prendergast – Kerikeri High School
Thanks to co-convenor Jodie O’Neill’s impeccable organizational skill, the 9 judges from Victoria University who were travelling from Wellington arrived on time to the 2013 Russell McVeagh Hawke’s Bay Regional Schools’ Debating Championships, held at Napier Boys’ High School over the weekend of the 6th and 7th of April.
For the first time in recent memory, the tournament was hosted in Napier, having been held at Karamu High or Lindisfarne College in Hastings in the years prior. The change of city was in part due to a desire to spread the hosting of the tournament around schools within the region. In future, the tournament alternate between Napier and Hastings schools each year.
16 teams participated in the regionals this year, which is part of a growing trend of more schools entering more teams within the region. Special mention goes to the schools from Gisborne who made the trip down, it is always good to see such a great turn out.
Students debated a diverse range of topics, showcasing their knowledge of the merits of charter schools, mandating fifty-fifty coverage of men’s’ and women’s’ sport, a parent’s right to override a doctor’s advice and the benefits or otherwise of preventing skilled migrants from developing countries from moving to NZ in the four break rounds. Four of the adjudicators participated in a show debate on the topic of whether the government should allow individuals to delete memories if the technology were ever invented. Two teams from Karamu High, one from Napier Boys’ and another from Lindisfarne debated the merits of media intrusion into the private lives of public figures in the semifinal before Lindisfarne 1 bested Karamu 1 in the final arguing for the proposition that prisoners facing life imprisonment should be able to opt for the death penalty.
The adjudicators all felt that the standard of debating in the region has risen markedly over the last few years. Teachers and students take on feedback from the university debaters with great enthusiasm. It would be fair to say that debating in the region is on the rise. This is thanks in no small part to the people who are devoting their time and effort to bettering HB debating. To Kimberley Robertson and Napier Boys’ High School, thank you for being such great hosts. To the teachers, coaches and parents who provided an audience, thank you for your commitment. Thanks must also go to the 7 adjudicators who gave up their time: Richard D’Ath (HB Team co-coach), Elise Munden (HB Development Squad Coach), Udayan Mukherjee, Olivia Hall, Philip Belesky, Xing-Yi Tan and Scott Fletcher. We look forward to next year’s tournament.
Cameron Price & Jodie O’Neill
Hawke’s Bay Regional Convenors
The 2013 Russell McVeagh Auckland Regional Schools Debating Championships were held over the weekend of 6 – 7 April at St Kentigern’s College. True to form Auckland enjoyed a high turnout with 28 teams participating and 19 of Auckland’s best judges giving up their time to adjudicate debates.
The teams debated many challenging topics, including whether doctors rather than parents should make important medical decisions on behalf of children, whether state housing should be built in wealthy areas, whether private contributions to political campaigns should be banned and whether we should introduce 50% quotas for women in the police force.
The eight teams progressing forward to the quarter-finals were Westlake Boys 1, Grammar 1, St Mary’s, St Cuthbert’s, Kristin, Westlake Boys 2, King’s and Howick. In the Grand Final, Westlake Boys affirmed and Auckland Grammar negated the motion that New Zealand should not accept skilled migrants from developing countries. The debate was of an exceptionally high quality and the judges were split 4-1 on the result. Grammar ultimately took out the debate, winning the Claire Ryan Cup, and should be very proud of being unbeaten throughout the whole tournament.
Over the weekend, the judges were closely watching the speakers in each team to determine who would be the recipients for various speaker awards. The recipients are listed below:
Convener’s Cup for the Best Speaker: Andrew Winstanley, Auckland Grammar School
Most Promising Speaker: Matthew Bilton, Westlake Boys High School
Highly Commended Awards: Elspeth Hughes and Annie Huang from King’s College
Promising Speaker Awards: James Manning from King’s College and Seran Rasanathan from Auckland Grammar School
The adjudicators also selected a squad of nine speakers. Over the next two – four weeks, these speakers will be slotted into two teams of three and three reserve spots. The two teams will travel down to Wellington in August to compete in the Russell McVeagh National Schools Debating Championships. Members of the squad are Andrew Winstanley and Alex Johnston (Auckland Grammar School); Kayla Polamalu (St Mary’s); James Rankin, Jesse Medcalf and Matthew Bilton (Westlake Boys’ High School); and Kellin Wang and Sabrina Yeh (St Cuthbert’s College).
Many thanks to the judges, teachers and especially to Chris Hodder from St Kentigern’s College, without whom the weekend would not have happened.
Auckland Regional Convener 2013
On Saturday 23rd March, 20 teams from eight schools across the Kahurangi-Marlborough region gathered at Nelson College for Girls for the 2013 Regional Schools’ Debating Championships. Over the course of the day junior and senior teams competed together on the same motions in four preliminary rounds, before separate junior and senior finals to determine this year’s winners.
For the first round of the day an advised topic area of ‘schools’ had been set, and teams got into the swing of the competition on the motion ‘This House would ban all forms of streaming in schools’. The remaining three preliminary rounds were entirely limited preparation, so with half an hour of prep behind them for each round teams debated the motions: ‘This House believes that there should be equal primetime television coverage of men’s and women’s sports’; ‘This House supports a “starting out wage” for young people, which is lower than the minimum wage’ and ‘This House believes that important medical decisions about children’s health should be made by doctors and not by their parents’.
At the end of four rounds a strong performance from Nelson College saw their two senior teams ranked in first and second place, setting up an all Nelson College senior final on the motion ‘This House believes that the government should build state housing in wealthy suburbs and neighbourhoods.’ In a 2-1 split decision, Nelson College 1 defeated Nelson College 2 to finish the day as champions of the senior competition.
Meanwhile a memorable junior final saw defending champions John Paul II High School face the junior team from Nayland College, whose impressive performance in the preliminary rounds had left them ranked third highest at the competition behind the two Nelson College senior teams. Debating the motion ‘This House believes that the media should not be allowed to intrude into the private lives of public figures’ John Paul II High School took the win to secure the Sounds Air Cup for a second year.
Following the finals, six speakers were named to the Kahurangi-Marlborough regional squad for 2013: Clara Van Wel (Marlborough Girls’ College), Nick Erasmuson (Garin College), Georgina Lomax-Sawyers (Buller High School), Charlie Norton (Nelson College), Hugo Lawrence (Nelson College) and Henry Neas, also of Nelson College. Three members of this squad will go on to represent the region at the New Zealand Secondary Schools’ Debating Championships in August.
Also recognised with individual awards were two Highly Commended speakers, Lucy Upton of Nelson College for Girls and Max Clarke of Nelson College. The best junior speaker at the competition was Finlay Langelaah of Garin College, and Charlie Norton capped off a very successful day for Nelson College when he was named the best speaker of the competition.
With many speakers getting their first experience of debating at the competition it was great to see such a high turnout and level of enthusiasm across all teams, so congratulations to all who got involved on what was a really good day’s competition. Thanks go to all the teachers who gave up their time to work with teams and attend the competition, and in particular to Nelson College for Girls and staff member Jo Marris for hosting this year.
Thanks are due also to the adjudicators who travelled across from Wellington for the day: Desley Horton, Udayan Mukherjee, Jodie O’Neill, Will Chisholm, Joe Connell, Richard D’Ath, Oliva Hall, Jake Brown and Kimberley Savill. Finally, our ongoing gratitude to Sounds Air for their generous sponsorship of the regional team. Support from Sounds Air is invaluable in enabling training sessions to take place in the lead up to Nationals, which provides a fantastic opportunity for speakers in the squad to develop as well as contributing to the success of the region on the national stage in recent years.
The nine Russell McVeagh Regional Debating Champs for 2013 start in March. Below are the details of each competition. To contact the convenor for each tournament; please click on the region name.
Northland – Whangarei Girls’ High School on 17 March
Otago-Southland – Columba College on 17/18 May
Kahurangi-Marlborough – Nelson College for Girls on 23 March
Hawke’s Bay – Napier Boys’ High School on 6/7 April
Auckland – St Kentigern College on 6/7 April
Waikato – University of Waikato on 13/14 April
Central North Island – Palmerston North Boys’ High School on 13/14 April
Wellington – Wellington College on 11/12 May
Canterbury – University of Canterbury on 18/19 May
The National Finals of the Russell McVeagh New Zealand Schools’ Debating Champs will be held on the weekend of 9-12 August in Wellington.No comments
Just in from Turkey – James Penn was ranked 8th best speaker of the tournament, and Thomas Simpson was ranked 5th. Well done guys! No doubt Ashley and Ed were also near the top as well.
Daniel Wilson from New Zealand also judged the Grand Final. Well done Daniel.
Our friends from Australia took out the title over Swaziland.
Update: Ed Foley was 16th, and Ashley was 40th. Well done guys. Full tab here.No comments
New Zealand unfortunately lost its octo-final to Canada this morning, on the motion “This House would welfare support to compulsive gamblers”.
A real shame for the team to go out in the octos after being unbeaten in the preliminary rounds; but it was still an incredible achievement to win 8 debates in a row.
Hard luck guys.No comments
New Zealand won all eight of their preliminary round debates at Worlds 2013. In round seven New Zealand (Ashley, Thomas and James) beat Lebanon by 3-0, negating “This House supports sovereign debt default as a legitimate economic strategy for countries”
And then in round eight New Zealand (Ashley, Thomes and James again) defeated Singapore by 2-1, negating “This House would require university students to work in their country of origin for a number of years after graduation.”
This is the third Worlds in a row where New Zealand has gone through the preliminary rounds unbeaten.
Follow @nzsdc on twitter for up to the minute news.
The octo-finals are on Sunday evening New Zealand time. New Zealand is against Canada.1 comment
New Zealand maintained its perfect record. In round five the NZ team of Ashley, Thomas and Ed defeated Wales by 3-0, affirming “This House would cease the exploitation of resources in the Arctic Region.”
In round six (an impromptu debate) James, Thomas and Ed defeated Slovakia by 3-0 negating “This House would require government schools to teach religious studies.”
Only Singapore is ahead of New Zealand after six rounds, having dropped one fewer judge. New Zealand faces Singapore in round eight. Paul Lau has the full leaderboard.No comments