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At the beginning of the September 2018, Dr Rice and Mr Cinnamond set up a debating club for anyone who was interested. At first, it was only me, a Year 8, and about ten sixth formers. In the first ever debate, half our team didn’t show up and I was against probably some of the best public speakers in the school. It was terrifying. Luna and I won, but I think that was mainly down to Luna’s facts and Dr Rice pitied me.

However, Dr Rice then set up a KS3 debate club, so that we were separated from the sixth formers. We did a few practise debates, then we found out that Miss had managed to get us a place in a debate in the Houses of Parliament. We would be going up against a team from Dr Rice’s last school in Northern Ireland and another from Liverpool. We were so excited to be entering a real competition!

We were told the subjects on which we would be debating, who the captains were and our individual speeches would be about. We practised and practised, helping each other with speeches and possible rebuttals. We were even practising on the train to London!

We got to the grand Houses of Parliament and had a guided tour around. We then went to have lunch and we took some photos with the other schools. Finally, we were ready to start.

In our first debate, we were opposing the motion that Brexit i was robbed young people of their future opportunities. We were against the Irish team, and they had some fantastic arguments. But we too had some great speeches. To top that, thanks to our immense research, we had them with the rebuttals. In our next debate, which was against the Liverpudlian school, we were opposing the motion that there should be another referendum. With witty phases such as “neverendum” and “European soup”, coupled with some incredible rebuttals and questions, we won that one too.

In our third and final debate, we were against the other team from the Irish school. I, myself, was not in this particular one, but was behind the main team, writing rebuttals they could make and extra points we suddenly remembered. This team’s arguments were by far the weakest, but they still made some good points. The motion, if memory serves, was that there should be another referendum, which we were proposing. We won this debate, making us the undefeated champions of the event.

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After being a member of debate club for a good eight months, and having competed in multiple with the team, I can say that the atmosphere of teamwork and friendship is really strong. We have grown so close and developed so many skills thanks to debate, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I hope it continues for many years. I want to thank Dr Rice for organising everything we’ve done so far.