Pupils speak out in Royal South Street Debating Challenge

BACK pain is one reason school should be extended until 5pm, primary school pupils heard from their contemporaries on Monday. 

Making a point: Daylesford Primary School grade 6 pupil Cooper Harwood presents his case at the 2014 Royal South Street Debating Challenge.
PICTURES: JUSTIN WHITELOCK

Making a point: Daylesford Primary School grade 6 pupil Cooper Harwood presents his case at the 2014 Royal South Street Debating Challenge. PICTURES: JUSTIN WHITELOCK

Speaking at the 2014 Royal South Street Debating Challenge, the Daylesford Primary School debating team’s opening speaker, Cooper Harwood, said longer school would mean fewer books to carry home, a point thoroughly refuted by his opponent, Pleasant Street grade 6 pupil Felix Oliver. 

“As for the back pain because we’d be carrying less homework home? No one said we’d have less homework.” He said, before finishing his argument with a dash of Dolly Parton. 

“Working 9-5, that’s no way to make a living, or to go to school.” 

The debating competition is running in council chambers all week, with students from grades 5 and up competing for a place in the grand final for each division on August 25. 

South Street competition chairman Eric McLeod said debating was good for students because it

taught a wide range of skills. 

“It gives them confidence that is helpful for other parts of life. It’s great skill for kids,” he said. 

Competitors are marked on the three Ms of debating; matter, method and manner. 

Monday’s topics revolved around sport, with Buninyong pupils winning by arguing that media should pay more attention to women in sport, and Pleasant Street taking the win for arguing school sport should be compulsory. 

But the Pleasant Street team 2 pupils arguing for the status quo on the length of school were disappointed, with adjudicator and former principal Tony Reyntjes backing Daylesford Primary’s argument that it should be longer.

alex.hamer@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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