Waikato wins Nationals 2011

Waikato wins Nationals 2011

The 2011 National Finals of the Russell McVeagh New Zealand Schools’ Debating Championships were held from 27 to 30 May at Victoria University of Wellington.

Twelve regional teams from Northland, Auckland, Waikato, Hawke’s Bay, Central North Island, Wellington, Kahurangi-Marlborough, Canterbury and Otago-Southland took part in the competition. The regional teams comprised the best speakers from the hundreds of debaters who competed at various regional competitions held earlier in the year.

On Saturday and Sunday each team competed in five preliminary round debates at Victoria University’s Pipitea Campus. In the preliminary rounds the teams debated the following topics:

  • This House would reintroduce a youth minimum wage
  • This House would compel doctors to report suspected cases of domestic violence to the police
  • This House believes New Zealand should become a republic
  • This House would impose trade sanctions on nations that refuse to take action on climate change
  • This House believes the posession of drugs for personal use should not be a crime

After the five preliminary rounds, the top four teams were Waikato (five wins), Auckland Blue (four wins), Wellington Gold (three wins), and Kahurangi-Marlborough (three wins). Sadly, Wellington Black and Auckland White missed out on win points.

The motion for the semi-final was: “This House would offer amnesty to dictators who step down”. Waikato defeated Kahurangi-Marlborough in a 2-1 decision and Auckland Blue defeated Wellington Gold, also in a 2-1 decision, setting up a Waikato v Auckland Grand Final.

The Grand Final was again hosted by Hon. Peter Dunne in the Legislative Council Chamber of Parliament, before distinguished guests His Excellency the Right Honourable Sir Anand Satyanand, Governor-General, Lady Satyanand, Hamish McIntosh, Partner at Russell McVeagh, and an audience of several hundred school students.

The final debate was humorous and passionate. The topic was “That New Zealand needs Don Brash” with Waikato taking the affirmative side and Auckland the negative. After a very close debate, the Waikato team of Christopher Jury, Thomas Simpson, and Kayla Grant were declared the winners in a unanimous decision.

After the Grand Final the members of the 2011 Russell McVeagh New Zealand Schools Debating team were announced. The five member team is made up of Nick Orr (Captain, Auckland Grammar School), Edward Foley (Wellington College), Rayhan Langdana (Wellington College), Thomas Simpson (Hamilton Boys’ High School) and James Penn (Wanganui High School).

The New Zealand Schools’ Debating Council is very grateful to Russell McVeagh for its continued support of New Zealand Schools’ Debating, which allows these Championships to occur. We are also grateful to Victoria University of Wellington who hosted the Championships during the weekend.

Thanks too to everyone who contributed to making the Championships such a memorable weekend – adjudicators, coaches, chairpeople, and many other helpers.

Here are the full list of results from Nationals 2011.

Winners: Waikato
Christopher Jury (Hamilton Boys’ High School)
Thomas Simpson (Hamilton Boys’ High School)
Kayla Grant (Hillcrest High School)
Coach: Josh Baxter

Runners-Up: Auckland Blue
Nick Orr (Auckland Grammar School)
Ishika Jayasinghe (St Cuthbert’s College)
Frederick Thursfield (King’s College)
Coaches: Stephanie Thompson and Glenn Riddell

Highly Commended speakers:
Ishika Jayasinghe (St Cuthbert’s College)
Kayla Grant (Hillcrest High School)
Nick Fenton (Wellington College)

Rosemary Dixon Cup for the Most Promising Speaker:
Christopher Jury (Hamilton Boys’ High School)

Reserves to the 2011 Russell McVeagh New Zealand Schools’ Debating Team:
Kimberley Savill (Nayland College)
Lucy Harrison (Mt Albert Grammar School)

2011 Russell McVeagh New Zealand Schools’ Debating Team:
Edward Foley (Wellington College)
Nick Orr (Auckland Grammar School)
Rayhan Langdana (Wellington College)
Thomas Simpson (Hamilton Boys’ High School)
James Penn (Wanganui High School)

Russell McVeagh Cup for the Best Speaker at the 2011 National Championships:
Thomas Simpson (Hamilton Boys’ High School)

Andrew Stockley Cup for the Captain of the 2011 Russell McVeagh New Zealand Schools’ Debating Team:
Nick Orr (Auckland Grammar School)