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Apopka High School Debate Team Reaches Their Goals


The Apopka High School Debate Team has recently conquered two mountains.

First, three team members qualified to compete in the National Speech & Debate Association National Tournament in Salt Lake City next week.

The second accomplishment was raising the funds necessary to travel to the tournament.

Apopka Debate TeamThe photo shows David Rankin and Bryan Nelson presenting Cathy Brown, Debate Coach, with two $500 checks. One from the Rotary Club of Apopka and the other from the John Land Apopka Community Trust.

Team members Ethan Uhlig and Morgan Donaghy are competing in Policy Debate. Christopher Hamilton is competing in World Schools Debate, which is much like Parliamentary Debate in college.

Policy Debate is a two-on-two debate that focuses on a selected policy question for the duration of the academic year. The format tests a student’s research, analytical, and delivery skills. Policy Debate involves the proposal of a plan by the affirmative team to enact a policy, while the negative team offers reasons to reject that proposal. Throughout the debate, students have the opportunity to cross-examine one another. A judge or panel of judges determines the winner based on the arguments presented.

This year's Policy Debate topic involved domestic surveillance by the U.S. government.

Ethan and Morgan qualified for this at a National Speech & Debate Association qualifying tournament held in Florida earlier this spring.

The World Schools Debate is a unique and dynamic form of debate, unlike any other practiced in the United States. World Schools Debate features a dynamic format combining the concepts of “prepared” topics with “impromptu” topics, encouraging debaters to focus on specified issues rather than debate theory or procedural arguments. This highly interactive style of debate allows debaters to engage each other, even during speeches. This challenging format requires good teamwork and in-depth quality argumentation.

Christopher qualified for this because he was an alternate at the National Speech & Debate Association Congress qualifier held in the Spring. He will join other students from Timber Creek High School to form a World Schools Debate team.



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