St Patrick’s Grade 6 Students Debate

Be it resolved that corporal punishment be banned in all schools and homes throughout the Tri-island state of Grenada. Be it resolved that universal education has done more harm than good to our education system.

On Wednesday 18 June, at the St Patrick’s Roman Catholic School, 14 participants from 4 schools engaged in lively debate, organised by the St Patrick’s Youth Organisation (SPYO) and the Debate Committee. The debate was among grade 6 students from Samaritan Presbyterian School, River Sallee Government School, St Patrick’s Anglican School and St Patrick’s RC School. Subjects covered in the debate:

Be it resolved that corporal punishment be banned in all schools and homes throughout the Tri-island state of Grenada. Samaritan proposed the resolution while River Sallee opposed.

Be it resolved that universal education has done more harm than good to our education system. Anglican proposed while Roman Catholic opposed.

The debate was an excellent way to get students involved in public speaking at an early age on current issues affecting them. The organisers proposed this programme to the Ministry of Education, realising that academic debate practice allows students to build skills they will need in secondary school and beyond.

St Patrick’s RC School, with a score of 608 won Debate 1 against St Patrick’s Anglican School who gained 383 points. Furthermore, the Roman Catholic School took all three positions 1st, 2nd and 3rd, with Lavern Julien 226 points, Kendra John (27th CPEA) 217 points, and Karlisha Roberts 165 points respectively.

River Sallee Government School scored 550 points, winning Debate 2 against Samaritan Presbyterian School with 596 points. Additionally, River Sallee students captured the first two positions while Samaritan took the 3rd position, with Taifa Benjamin (50th CPEA) 214 points, Jox-max Wildman 204 points, and Khalid Straker (23rd CPEA) 199 points respectively.

Lavern Julien of St Patrick’s RC School captured the SPYO’s Most Outstanding Debater 2014 with 226 points. Kendra John was second outstanding debater.

The debate was a valuable exercise in training students to employ various component skills, and in practicing their oral literacy in a laboratory environment. Skills included

  • Research competence
  • Media Literacy (means students must consult and evaluate information from a variety of media as part of research.)
  • Reading Comprehension (throughout the debate participation, many students confront sources of information that they would never otherwise consume.)
  • Argument Literacy
  • Evidence Evaluation
  • Summarisation and Outlining
  • Public Speaking
  • Floor management

Sponsors of the debate included Republic Bank G’da Ltd, Rubis West Indies, St Patrick’s Development Foundation NY Inc, former Prime Minister of Grenada Tillman Thomas, Glenelg Spring Water, Grenada Teachers School Supplies Ltd, members of the general public and SPYO.

Supporters included Ministry of Education, the Management team for Education District 2 (St Patrick), principals and staff of the various schools, parents and former educators within the parish of St Patrick, and Ricardo Nicholas, SPYO’s Consultant for Education.

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