Should the international community impose a two-state solution on the Ukraine? This was but one of the many challenging questions nearly 90 junior high school students from across Canada debated during this weekend’s national championships held at various schools throughout Winnipeg.
Following rigorous regional selection tournaments in each of their home provinces, grades eight and nine students from BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia joined competitors from Manitoba for as many as ten rounds of debate over the course of the weekend; a gruelling schedule even for the most seasoned senior high school debater.
The Gray Academy of Jewish Education hosted the tournament on Friday, where the students hashed out the prepared topic on the current crisis in the Ukraine. Following two intense rounds of debate and a lunch prepared by the school’s community, the entire delegation visited the Canadian Museum for Human Rights; a fitting outing following the morning’s hotly contest and complicated resolution.
Saturday, the students participated in four impromptu rounds at Acadia Junior High, debating issues ranging from climate change to refugees, artificial intelligence to political assassination. For these rounds, students had no foreknowledge of the specific topics and were given only thirt minutes to prepare themselves.
Quarter, semi and final rounds will be held on Sunday at St. John’s Ravenscourt School.