The Beacon School Leaderboard 09/05

Godolphin Debaters Through To National Finals

Published on isbi School News dated Thursday 7th of May 2015

Our Sixth Form Debating team won the Southern Regional Final of the Debating Matters Competition, held at St Mary's University, Twickenham, on Friday 1 May. The team, which comprises Becky Ball, Miranda Mackay, Sarah Roller and Annie Smith, had already beaten several other schools at the Qualifying Round, which was held at Royal Wootton Bassett Academy last term. On Friday, they were first of all up against Worthing College, where Becky and Miranda successfully argued that 'The UK should liberalise its drugs policy'. Annie and Sarah then took on The Piggott School, arguing against the motion that 'Physician assisted suicide should be legalised'. In both debates, the Godolphin teams won a convincing victory and they were praised by the judges for their research, arguments and teamwork and for how they dealt with some very difficult questioning by both the judges and the audience.

Having won their first two debates, the team were then through to the final debate of the day when they took on St Mary's School, the team who had won the other round of debates being held that day (against Esher College and Chenderit School). In the final debate, Annie and Miranda were arguing that voting should not be made compulsory in the UK. They were fantastic and impressed both the judges and the audience. Indeed, the teacher from a rival school came up to us at the end of the debate to say how impressed she was and that she had told her own team to take lessons from Godolphin's performance as it had been a masterclass in how to debate! Moreover, when the judges declared that Godolphin had won, they said that two of the judges had even been persuaded to change their own thinking on voting because Annie and Miranda had convinced them that they were wrong!

As well as winning the day and getting through to the National Final, Sarah Roller and Miranda Mackay were singled out for their contributions and questions from the floor and for the quality of their debating. They were both awarded prizes and books. Miranda was selected by two independent judges as the most effective debater of the whole day.

This is the third year running that Godolphin has got through to the Regional Finals, but it is the first year that we have got through to the National Final. 270 schools took part in the Qualifying Rounds, 72 schools made it through to the various Regional Finals, and only 12 schools have made it through to the National Final, which will take place at the British Library 26-28 June. It is a significant achievement to get through to the National Final and we wish Becky, Miranda, Sarah and Annie every success in June!
Godolphin Debaters Through To National Finals - Photo 1
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