“TEXTING is thrashing the English language”.
This was the assertion put before senior debating teams representing Bishop Tyrrell Anglican College and Scone Grammar School (SGS) recently, when they met within the grounds of their hosts at the Central Coast Grammar School.
Other participating schools in the four-round inter-school debating competition included the Newcastle Grammar School and the Hunter Valley Grammar School.
The competition among the primary and secondary students from all four schools was intense.
Junior debaters have been encouraged to participate by being granted far longer times to prepare.
Senior debaters however, are expected to perform at a more advanced level and are only given the topic of debate soon after they arrive at the venue.
It’s a challenging proposition – working as part of a four-person team with minimal resources and time, pitting your public speaking, presentation and language skills against an opposing team that has an equal commitment in refuting your argument.
The SGS debating squad have been expertly coached by Deb Moore, who despite recently retiring, still maintains her connection with the school and generously assists the debating squad in learning the finer points of persuasion – a social skill that, while not explicitly taught at schools, is vital throughout life.
Also, the SGS debaters regularly remain after school to train and work with each other, helping to instil a greater sense of loyalty in the teams.
On this occasion, the SGS senior debating team was victorious for the affirmative side – and deserving of their win.
Thanks to Mrs Moore, Mrs Broomfield and Mrs Edwards for training and transporting the teams and thanks also to SGS for providing opportunities that students of much larger metropolitan schools often take for granted.