Debating News | ISDA Round 2 vs Newington

Year 8 ISDA

On Friday 26February the Year 8 ISDA team debated against Newington on the topic “That schools should not organise classes based on academic ability.” We were the affirmative team in this debate and created a model that made it so schools would organise the classes by the students’ engagement and willingness to learn, while also handing out extension worksheets to all classes to not only extend them but also test the students’ engagement. One point of ours was that it would improve the wellbeing of every student because there is less competition in the higher classes, and in the lower classes the kids won’t feel discouraged from learning because they can move up in the classes by just engaging more. One of Newington’s counterarguments was that it would make the learning less effective. In the end the debate was very close with Newington coming out on top.

D. Lok (8Ke)

Year 10 ISDA

After a disappointing loss at the hands of SCECGS Redlands the week prior, the 10 ISDA team was ready and eager for a shot at redemption in last week’s debate against Newington. As this was a debate we’d all had before — the issue as to whether or not religion should be taught in schools, with the Trinity team arguing in favour of the topic as the affirmative team — the team comprising W. Taplin (10WH), V. Singleton (10WH), A. Jacobs (10Fo) and C. Kong (10La) had to make smart choices approaching the topic so as not to create a predictable case. The model posed by Trinity was a complete blanket ban of religious education in schools, arguing that students should attend a church or religious group outside of school if they are keen on getting a religious education. Trinity’s first speaker presented an argument based on the fact that no organisation has the right to teach religion to one who does not accept said religion or who currently holds a different religion, as per article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Newington responded with sound rebuttals and a countermodel of their own which promoted the idea that students would be given a background into all religions before being left alone to decide which religion they wished to follow. While this countermodel rendered Trinity’s first points ineffective, it left itself exposed to a number of logistical impracticalities, all of which were bought up by Trinity’s second speaker, who exposed the logistical impracticalities of teaching religions at schools such as finding qualified teachers, laying out curricula and ensuring that the subject did not become too demanding for students.  Newington’s second speaker responded declaring that their model gave students a choice as to which religion they were to follow but gave no response to the comments made regarding practicality. The third speakers from both Trinity and Newington summarised the debate, both declaring that their team held a marginal advantage over the other. In the end, the debate was narrowly awarded to Trinity based on a lack of response from Newington regarding the issues raised about impracticality. Despite this, the adjudicator was quick to point out that this debate was one focused on principle rather than practicality. We were also told to outline the status quo more clearly, as neither side clearly stated the current situation regarding the topic. We may have won this debate, but we certainly aren’t in the finals yet. We must use the lessons learnt in this debate to arm ourselves for the future so that we may be ready for the finals.    

W. Taplin (10WH)

Debating is naught but a verbal battle to the death; two foes, two teams willing to conquer their opposition. Our opposition, Newington, unwittingly took the approach of telling a lie often enough until it became true, trying to overcome us with treachery. But, unfortunately for Newington, the only blood that we bled, was green and white. The ISDA Senior Bs conquered Newington, leaving them to wither away.  We overshadowed our opposition in the topic “That we should ban companies from funding academic research.”  Such a topic was underneath the voluminous brain of J. May (11Yo), and his deconstruction of the topic resulted in Newington being phenomenally terror struck, their feet trembling in their boots. The rest of the Senior B ISDA team comprising J. Ming (11Yo), H. Davidson-McLeod (11Ta) and A. Lee (11WH) blew the Newington case out of the water. Our path toward the finals is certainly not guaranteed but I can assure our many followers that the Trinity Debating Society and its competitors in both the ISDA and FED contests will strive for success and not go down without a fight.

J. Ming (11Yo)

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