Rotary Club Of Warwick

Feb10 - Youth Speaks 2020

February 6th saw Northgate Methodist Church in Warwick stage the annual “Youth Speaks” competition organised by the Rotary Clubs of Warwick, Southam 2000 and Leamington Spa Regency, to give local young people a chance to demonstrate their public speaking skills.

This year 18 young people competed in teams from Kingsley School, Myton School (2), Warwick School (1), Southam College and Princethorpe College. Teams competed in 2 classes; -Intermediates (11 -13) and Seniors (14 -17), with prizes going to the winning team, and an opportunity to compete in the West Midlands regional competition. In past years Warwick teams have even reached the National Finals.

Each team of three members had 15 minutes to debate a topic of their choosing which ranged from “Should mobile phones be allowed in schools” to “Is positive discrimination ever justified?”. This annual event gives young people a chance to voice their opinions on topics they feel strongly about and demands significant research, knowledge and the confidence to present arguments clearly and concisely.

The contestants were judged by an experienced panel well steeped in the mystical art of public speaking. The event was hosted by the President of the Rotary Club of Warwick, David Brain; Southam 2000 President Annette Jackson; and Leamington Spa Regency President Caroline Stanton, and attended by Warwick Mayor Cllr Neale Murphy, parents and colleagues.

Head judge Jon Wassall, commented that all the teams were “winners” in that learning how to speak in public would give everyone an advantage in life being able to make themselves heard. Everyone had prepared well, done their research and engaged with the audience. The results had been very close. Thanks were also due to parents and teachers who supported them through the preparation process.

The Intermediate class was won by a team from Kingsley School which debated “Veganism is a fad” and the damage caused by de-forestation. They were presented with certificates by President Caroline Stanton.

The Senior class was won by a team from Myton School which discussed “Your holiday does more harm than good” comparing the damage caused to the environment to the beneficial effects on our health. They are shown receiving their awards from Warwick Mayor Neale Murphy

Winners and runner up teams received book tokens from Warwick Books which supported the event, and all contestants received a Certificate of Participation for their Achievement Folders. Both winning teams will go forward to the Regional Finals held on Saturday at Myton School. The Mayor concluded the evening with heartfelt appreciation to the young people for their impressive talent which left everyone thinking about the issues they had raised.