Middle school debate outreach – Thank you!

Thank you to CCDU members volunteering to support the Middle School Public Debate Program outreach tournament, held at the Center for Early Education in West Hollywood, on Saturday, January 25. The MSPDP’s Golden West Debate League, established and supported by the Debate Union, is the sole authorized league exclusively for 5th and 6th grade students. More than 200 middle school students, teachers, parents, and observers attended the event.

Maya Kurkhill directed the tournament and managed tournament tabulation. She was assisted by Michelle Ramirez and Kayla Solomon. Both learned tournament operations and the proprietary MSPDP event software. Trevor Christensen volunteered as a tournament judge.

Volunteers are needed for the next outreach event, a high school competition to be held at Compton High School, Saturday, February 15.

Volunteers Needed – Middle School Outreach, Saturday, January 25

The Debate Union will help manage one of its Middle School Public Debate Program league tournaments on Saturday, January 25. The tournament will be held at the Center for Early Education in West Hollywood. The Debate Union will provide staff for tournament tabulation and judging (judges must be PDP-certified). In addition, Debate Union members will assist in training staff and students from Cape Cod College attending the event in order to support the development of an MSPDP league in Massachusetts in Fall 2020.

Please contact Maya Kurkhill by Thursday, January 23, 6:00 PM to register for the tournament. The Debate Union will arrange transportation and meals for participants.

The Debate Union sponsors an international secondary school debate outreach program, the International Public Debate Program (IPDP). Students primarily debate in the World Schools Debate Championship format, which is used for many major international competitions.

Members of the Debate Union may assist coaching and judging students for international competitions and may accompany them to major events during the academic term and summer.

The CCDU is now preparing for WSDC-format tournaments at Cornell University and Simon Fraser University in October, as well as the Euro Championship in Croatia in December and Spring 2020 Pan American Debate Championship and China Schools Championship. If you are interested in learning the WSDC format and assisting as IPDP staff, please review dates for IPDP training or contact John Meany,

The CCDU will host a college PDP championship, Saturday-Sunday, January 25-26, 2020. This is the second year of college-level PDP competition. École de Guerre, the French war college, was the 2019 tournament champion. The top-ranked US team (representing the second-place Claremont Colleges team) also won tickets to a Lupe Fiasco concert in Los Angeles. HSPDP high school teams may also participate in the event; there are separate awards for high school contestants.

The primary differences from other debate formats include team number and members (two 3-person teams), use of POIs and argumentative heckling, integration of pre-announced, research-based topics and impromptu topics, judge certification, and a comprehensive 100-point standards-based assessment rubric for individual speaker scores and awards.

Members of the Debate Union are eligible to participate in the PDP championship.

The Debate Union sponsors the Public Debate Program (PDP), debate and public speaking training for secondary school students. Programming includes hundreds of thousands of teachers and students in 36 countries. Members of the Debate Union serve as staff for academic year and summer teacher and student workshops, direct and tabulate tournaments, administer PDP operations, and judge competitive events. Events are usually 1-day, either a Saturday or Sunday. Debating is in English, Spanish, French, and Chinese.

The Debate Union directly supports the Southern California High School Public Debate Program (HSPDP), several Southern California middle school leagues – Golden West Debate League, Inland Valley Debate League, Pacific Coast Debate League, Rancho California Debate League, and Temecula Valley Debate League, as well as the middle school Hoosier State Debate League in Indianapolis. The CCDU provides annual and indirect support for many other leagues and schools, including the newest program, HSPDP-Panama.

There are opportunities to volunteer for PDP competitions throughout the year. The Southern California high school schedule includes the following tournaments, workshops, and conferences:

Saturday, September 28 – HSPDP Teacher Workshop, Claremont McKenna College (CMC)

League Tournaments
Saturday, October 12 – Tournament 1, Site TBD
Saturday, November 9 – Orange County Championship, St. Margaret’s Episcopal School, San Juan Capistrano
Sunday, December 15 – The Webb Schools, Claremont
Saturday, January 18 – Desert Valleys Championship, Site TBD
Saturday, February 15 – Compton High School, Compton
Saturday, March 7 – Los Angeles Championship, Oaks Christian School, Westlake Village or Orange County School of the Arts
Sunday, March 29 – Los Angeles Championship, Oaks Christian School, Westlake Village or Orange County School of the Arts

Championship Tournament
Championship Tournament – Saturday, April 18, Site TBD

Additional Events
Language Tournament (3 divisions – Spanish, French, and Chinese) – The Webb Schools, Date TBD
Academic Conference on Criminal Justice Reform – Friday-Saturday, January 24-25, CMC
University PDP Championship (high school teams eligible, with independent awards) – Saturday-Sunday, January 25-26, CMC
Academic Conference on Electoral Reform – October 2020, CMC (paper and other submissions, Summer 2020)

All members of the Debate Union need to be available for staff and judging work at the PDP high school and middle school championships, as well as additional select events. Here are the 2020 championship dates:

High School Championship, Saturday, April 18, TBD
Southwest Regional MSPDP Championship, Saturday, April 25, Mount San Antonio College, Walnut
MSPDP National Championship, Sunday, April 26, Mount San Antonio College, Walnut

Congratulations – Asante Africa/Accelerated Learning in the Classroom Program

Congratulations to the Asante Africa Foundation, a non-profit educational organization working with teachers and students in rural Tanzania and Kenya. The organization uses the Debate Union’s Public Debate Program to accelerate critical-thinking and problem-solving skills in the classroom. More than 45,000 students and hundreds of teachers have participated in programming.