NCHS Debate Team Places #1 in Connecticut Debate Tournament

On Saturday, February 4th, the New Canaan High School Debate Team hosted over 300 students, parents, and judges for the February Connecticut Debate Tournament. Of this number, 12 of our NCHS students competed, with two placing first in the paired Novice Team Division and one placing fourth in the individual Novice Speaker Division. 

New Canaan High School students Alma Hsu and Sophia La Magna successfully placed first in the Novice Team Division, with Sophia La Magna also placing fourth in the individual Novice Speaker Division. The pair competed against other student representatives from over 25 schools and have qualified for state finals held at the end of March. 

The Connecticut Debate Tournament is a competition where students compete against their peers to earn distinction in the field of debate. 

Students must use skillful rhetoric to prepare clear, concise, and compelling arguments on a designated topic presented day of competition. This year, the motion in debate was on whether public sector workers should be allowed to strike.

Students compete in four rounds of debates, each lasting 40 minutes, and compete in pairs or two or on an individual level. All students debate each side of the motion twice and must prepare both sides of the issue. They are not allowed to use outside research and have one hour to prepare their arguments based on research provided by judges. 

After the four rounds, trophies are awarded to the top five pairs and individual speakers in both Novice (9th and 10th grade) and Varsity (11th and 12th grade) divisions. Those who receive a trophy will qualify for state finals held on March 25th at Stamford High School. 

Thank you to Debate Team Coach Nancy Stevens and to all who helped make the day a success!