The 2007 Otago/Southland Championships were held on Saturday 5 May at Otago Girls’ High School. 16 teams made their way through four rounds, a semi-final before James Hargest College won the final against Colomba College.
The first two rounds were devoted to consideration of bioethical issues at teams debated both sides of the moot ‘This House would allow parents to design their babies’. The students handled the complex issues involved in the topic well, as they did the issues raised in the two limited preparation topics, the first ‘That this House would withdraw from Iraq immediately’, the second ‘This House would ban fast-food advertising’. After close semi-finals on the topic ‘This House would cut personal income tax’ James Hargest College and Colomba College faced each other in the final on ‘That consumers should refuse to buy anything produced in a sweatshop’, with James Hargest emerging as Otago/Southland Champions.
The tournament also saw the awarding of a number of speaker prizes. Jenny Lander (St Hilda’s College), Karishma Zabour (James Hargest College), and Ben Winter (James Hargest College), received promising speaker awards. Susan Smirk (Otago Girls’ High School) and Emma Brand (James Hargest College) were Highly Commended. The Otago-Southland Schools Debating Squad was also named, comprising Emma Hutton (Colomba College), Hana Nylof (Otago Girls’ High School), Kim Hannah (St Hilda’s College), Kurt Purdon (Otago Boys’ High School). Emma Hutton of Colomba College was named speaker of the tournament.
A very big thank-you to Otago Girls’ High School for hosting the tournament, as well as to the coaches of the teams and the adjudicators.