Mt Albert Grammar School win first ever Auckland title
The 2011 Russell McVeagh Auckland Regional Schools Debating Championships were held this year over the weekend of 5th to 6th March at St Kentigern College. A record thirty teams entered, making the competition for the eight spots in the quarter-finals fierce. Speakers debated a variety of topics, ranging from whether foreign based players should be allowed to play for the All Blacks, to whether the environmental movement should use violence to advance their agenda. Speakers benefited from extensive feedback from the region’s best judges throughout the three rounds.
Four teams – King’s College, St Cuthbert’s College, Auckland Grammar and Mount Albert Grammar made it through to the semi-finals, with King’s and Mount Albert eventually emerging victorious to reach the Grand Final.
Mount Albert affirmed and King’s negated the topic “This house would ban all forms of commercial whaling”. The judging panel, which included Worlds Schools President Claire Ryan and New Zealand Schools’ Debating Council Member Yogesh Patel, concluded that the final was of an exceptionally high quality. The panel were however unanimous in declaring Mount Albert Grammar to be the winners and recipients of the Claire Ryan Cup.
Over the course of the weekend adjudicators had the difficult task of selecting two teams to compete at the National schools debating competition in August as well as a range of other prizes.
Auckland Schools’ Development Squad: Chelsea Wiggel (St Kentigern College); Andrew Winstanley (Auckland Grammar School); Chris Ryan (Howick College); Mitchell Smitheram (Kristin School).
Most Promising Speaker: Andrew Winstanley (Auckland Grammar School)
Highly Commended awards: Ashish Pandey (King’s College); Chris Ryan (Howick College)
Reserves to the Auckland Schools’ Debating Squad: Bhavan Srikumar (Auckland Grammar School)
Auckland Schools’ Debating Squad: Frederick Thursfield (King’s College); Ishika Jayasinghe (St Cuthbert’s College); Sam Viskovich (Westlake Girls High School); Lucy Harrison (Mount Albert Grammar School); Nick Orr (Auckland Grammar School); Michael Wang (Macleans College).
Convenor’s Cup for Best Speaker: Ishika Jayasinghe (St Cuthbert’s College).
Auckland Convenor 2011