Over the weekend of 25-26 January 2014, 32 teams from across all three Divisions of the Secondary School debate circuit participated in the inaugural Speak! Ventures Debate Championships (SVDC) 2014.
Jointly organised by Speak! Ventures and Debate Association (Singapore), the SVDC was a great opportunity for school teams to hone their abilities in the run-up to the national championships. In particular, teams benefited from a strong line-up of adjudicators, led by Mr. Mark Gabriel - Chief Adjudicator of the National Championships, Team Singapore co-coaches Mr. Darion Hotan and Mr. Tan Teck Wei, as well as Mr. Eric Jude Tan and Ms. Cherylyn Wee of Debate Association (Singapore).
Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Health & Ministry of Transport, Dr. Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim also graced the Gold Finals.
After 5 hotly contested rounds, Xinmin Secondary School A and Hwa Chong Institution A emerged Champion Teams of the Silver and Gold Divisions respectively. The Top Speakers of the Silver and Gold Divisions were Lin Mingxuan (Maris Stella High School) and Cheang Ko Lyn (Singapore Chinese Girls’ School) respectively.
Last but not least, SVDC would not have been possible without the kind support of Pioneer Junior College’s Debate Society, as well as all volunteer judges.
Note: Speak! Ventures is a professional development consultancy firm specializing in public speaking and communications training for individuals of all ages.
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Organised by Debate Association (Singapore), the D3DC presents a unique opportunity for less-exposed and less-experienced school debate teams to hone their skills in a learning-oriented environment. Students discussed topics such as the effect of personal electronic devices on today's youth, the mandatory death penalty and civil disobedience.
Additionally and in a first for 2014, eighteen shadow adjudicators in training for the Singapore Nationals also gained on-the-job experience under specially-designated senior Judge Mentors. This is part of a new DA(S) initiative to increase the depth of Singapore's volunteer adjudication pool, and improve the competencies of new judges.
Debate Association (Singapore) conducted its annual December Camp from 13 - 14 December 2013 at Yale-NUS.
On the 7th and 8th Of December, teams from 20 secondary schools across Singapore participated in the Youth Debate Open 2013, organised by Debate Association (Singapore) in collaboration with the Jelutung Youth Executive Committee, sponsored by the Singapore National Co-Operative Federation (SNCF) and held UWCSEA (Dover) and Canberra Community Club.
This year saw students debating challenging motions on subjects ranging from the introduction of HDB block co-op vetting processes, to allowing parents an enhanced role in deciding the curriculum and teaching standards for their children.
Multiple independent teams comprised of students from separate schools also took part, a sign of a blossoming and closely knit debating community flourishing in the secondary school circuit.