Speech and Debate

Southwest Debate Team 

Competitive interscholastic debates have occurred in high schools for well over a century. Because debate requires students to formulate, research, and deliver persuasive arguments on a range of vital issues, it is an invaluable educational activity. 

There are many different debate formats that have been used in competition. Lincoln-Douglas, parliamentary, student congress, model United Nations, and policy debate are all different formats in which students compete. Each debate format has unique strengths and weaknesses. A group of debate teachers from Minnesota ten years ago designed a new debate format, Classic Debate. 

Classic Debate 
Classic debate is designed to make competitive debate attractive to a large number of students. Teams of two students will clash over current issues. The debate season runs from October through December. During the season, students will debate two different topics. The first topic will be selected by debate teachers in August. The second topic will be chosen by participating students. 

Classic debates are argued by teams of two (two debaters on each side for a total of four in each round of debate). Each member of the two-person team gives speeches and helps his or her partner the best they can. The team prepares and argues both sides of the issue. 

The debate season consists of invitational tournaments which attract schools from around the state. Awards are often given out to the top teams based on record. The final tournament of the year is the championship tournament. 

Debaters practice each week. The debate team uses practice time to prepare for competition. The exact schedule will be set at the start of the year. Several coaches work with students at different times and on different days. 

Speech

Dan Ferris, Rm 114

Debate

Alex Hoselton, Rm E101


If are interested in joining the debate team contact Dr. Smith or Coach Susan Kolze at swspeechdebate@aol.com