News Godolphin debaters pit their wits against schools in Los Angeles and Croydon 20.05.2021

On Saturday, six Godolphin debaters (Ruby, Dilia, Melissa and Josephine in the Lower Sixth and Antara and Ella in Year 9) paid a virtual visit to California, to take part in a debating competition with Sierra Canyon School, Los Angeles. Students took part in three debates: ‘The rise of the influencer economy has done more harm than good’, ‘This house believes parents have the right to track their children’ and ‘This house believes that having over $1 billion in personal assets is unethical’.

Impressive quick-thinking was on display, with the British Parliamentary debate format giving just 15 minutes’ preparation time, with no research allowed. With such topical motions to discuss there were a number of passionate speeches as well as plenty of robust rebuttal of the opponents’ points. Despite the time difference (with the US students starting at 8am!) there was a real sense of international friendship throughout, with students continuing to discuss the debate topics after the formal debates had ended, curious to find out more about each other’s world views. With the teams and sides being mixed there was no overall winning school but lots of very positive feedback to our students who should be very proud of their performance.

On Monday three Lower Sixth students (Georgina, Anais and Cecilia) took part in a virtual debate against Old Palace of John Whitgift School, Croydon. The motion was ‘This house would introduce a maximum wage’. Godolphin students were opposing the motion and displayed excellent teamwork, rhetoric and research skills, emerging victorious despite a very strong case from Old Palace.