Laurel Speech and Debate has Best National Tournament Performance to Date

Four members of the Laurel Speech and Debate Team had outstanding performances in the National Speech and Debate Association National Tournament the week of June 15-19.
This year’s National Tournament was conducted online due to COVID-19. 

Sarah Hatem '21 and Abby McGowan '21 were North Coast District Champions in Public Forum Debate, a style of debate where two speakers use empirical evidence to support their side of a resolution, and advanced to Round 10 at Nationals, placing them in the Top 40 in the United States for their event. Sarah and Abby debated the topic “Resolved: On balance, charter schools are beneficial to the quality of education in the United States,” and successfully argued both sides of this resolution throughout their three days of competition. Abby and Sarah spent the spring preparing remotely with Laurel’s Director of Speech and Debate, Rich Kawolics

Jane Jusko '21 and Ria Raj '21 were members of two North Coast district "all star" teams competing in World Schools Debate, coached by Laurel's Assistant Director of Speech and Debate Stephanie Kahn '10 and Devon Snook of Vermilion High School. World Schools Debate is a team-based parliamentary debate style where three speakers in proposition of the round’s motion face three speakers in opposition to the motion in a series of four speeches. This was the first year that Laurel students competed on the North Coast District teams. 

Jane's team--North Coast Brown--made it to the Double Octofinals before being eliminated, placing them 17th in the world for this style of debate. Ria's team--North Coast Blue--competed in the Final round and finished the tournament in 2nd Place. You can watch Ria compete in the Semifinal round of World Schools Debate here.

Congratulations to these incredible students and to the continued strength of Laurel Speech and Debate! 
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