Quick thinking Alcester triumph in Youth Speaks debating finale - The Redditch Standard
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9th Aug, 2022

Quick thinking Alcester triumph in Youth Speaks debating finale

A FRIENDLY war of words took centre stage when young people gathered to compete in The 11th Heart of England Rotary Club’s Youth Speaks Finals Day.

Watched by a 300-strong audience, 30 students from ten schools across the district took up the debating challenge for the return of the popular competition after three years due to lockdown.

The Youth Speaks champions in the Senior Competition were Alcester Grammar School, made up of Gracie Day, Sophie Woodhead and Milissa Mireagheri and, runner up, The Heart of England School, Balsall Common, made up of Caitlin Murry, Oliver Bennett and Farah Mead.

Champions in the Intermediate Competition were Solihull School, represented by Fatima Hammad, Isabella Skinner and Jenna Ladwa. Runners up were King Edward VI School, Stratford, represented by Arnav Maulay, Youssef Mourkus and Rufus Round.

The debates, which took place at The Methodist Church in Warwick on March 19, covered a wide variety of topics from Is Society Actually Absurd to Banning Rugby In Schools.

Rotarian and event organiser David Valentine, said: “The standard of the delivery of the debates from all the schools was first class.

“The audience loved every minute of the competition particularly where the questioner put scenarios to them which required the team to be very quick thinking as they were also against the clock.”

He added: “Children are naturally competitive and as soon as the teaching staff came to hear that the competition was going to go ahead, they supported the local Rotary Clubs’ efforts to get the Youth Speaks competition up and running again.

“Great credit to the children, teaching staff and club members for bringing this to fruition.”

Cups, medals, book tokens and Certificates were presented by the current District Governor of District 1060, David Clayfield and next year’s incoming, District Governor John Parkinson.

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