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Debate is one of the most effective academic programs for academic, career and life success.
Public Speaking is one of the most effective academic programs for academic, career and life success.
Study after study shows the positive effects of debate and argumentation education. Debate teaches students every academic skill - reading, writing, questioning, critical thinking, listening, teamwork, researching, public speaking and so many more skills! Debate teaches every academic subject - current events, philosophy, political science, economics, geography, international affairs, STEM and every other discipline. The secret sauce is debate is a sport but for the brain.
All Students should have access to speech and debate.
President Obama stated you might know you could be the next Mayor or Supreme Court Justice until you join your school's debate team. Speech and Debate open an infinite number of opportunities. A survey of US Congressional Representatives showed that the majority of members of Congress were on their school's speech and debate team. Indeed, a high school student was encouraged by her debate coach to become a lawyer. The result is that student, Sonya Sotomayor became the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice of the United States. From Presidents to Supreme Court Justices to Mayors to teachers to nonprofit leaders - speech and debate empowers students in everything they do.
Billionaire Warren Buffet stated that his proudest accomplishment was his certificate in public speaking. Most people indicate that public speaking is actually one of their top fears. But every study from the corporate world to the academic world shows the critical importance of public speaking skills. Indeed, the ability to stand up to advocate for oneself and one's ideas is the most important skill to change the world and make it a better place.
All Schools should have speech and debate teams.
While scholastic speech and debate are one of the oldest academic programs (Socrates and Ancient Greece and beyond), it is also one of the most segregated academic programs. While every school is expected to have sports, , music, arts, dance and other programs - speech and debate is still an after thought. As a result, the majority of schools still do not have access to speech and debate. Our mission is to support any school in building a successful and sustainable speech and debate program.
Free Online Speech and Debate Tournaments each month
Free Online Oratory Tournament each month
Free Online Speech Tournament each month
All Students (K-College)
Resources on how to start and sustain a speech and debate team at your school
Staff are there for you and your school 7 days a week, year round!
Why Speech and Debate?
“Maybe you could be a mayor or a Senator or a Supreme Court Justice, but you might not know that until you join student government or the debate team.”
– President Obama, State of Schools Address
Those 4 years in debate were the educational foundation of everything I did. And I don’t mean that in some simple form…I’m saying the finest education I got from any of the institutions I attended, the foundation of my mind that I got during those 4 years of competitive policy debate; that is, 90% of the intellectual capacity that I operate with today–Fordham [University] for college, Fordham for the Ph.D., Harvard for law school–all of that is the other 10%.
— John Sexton, President of New York University, Former NYC Debate Coach of 10 years
I think debating in high school and college a most valuable training whether for politics, the law, business, or for service on community committees such as the PTA and the League of Women Voters. A good debater must not only study material in support of his own case, but he must also, of course, thoroughly analyze the expected arguments of his opponent….The give and take of debating, the testing of ideas, is essential to democracy. I wish we had a good deal more debating in our institutions than we do now.
— President John F. Kennedy
But I will tell you that, right there in the prison, debating, speaking to a crowd, was as exhilarating to me as the discovery of knowledge through reading had been. Standing up there, the aces looking up at me, the things in my head coming out of my mouth, while my brain searched for the next best thing to follow what I was saying, and if I could sway them to my side by handling right, then I had won the debate – once my feet got wet, I was gone on debating. Whichever side of the selected subject was assigned to me, I’d track down and study everything I could find on it. I’d put myself in my opponent’s place and decide how I’d try to win if I had the other side; and then I’d figure a way to knock down those points
- Malcolm X