The Debate Team welcomes any 6th, 7th or 8th grader who is interested in developing research and public speaking skills that will serve them well in high school, college, and beyond.  We meet on Wednesdays after school, beginning in September and ending in early February.  Our schedule of debates can be found below, along with the debate topic for this school year.  The coaches for this year are Mrs. Fredette and Mrs. McGinley.  We look forward to another great year!
Novice Debate Schedule
  • Wed, October 26      Harrington Park School
  • Wed, November 2     Tenafly Middle School
  • Wed, November 16    Tenakill School
  • Thurs, December 8    Tenafly Middle School
  • Wed, January 18       Creskill 
  • Wed, February 1     Carlstadt
 All Debates Start at 4:00 p.m.







Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially 

         increase its economic and/or diplomatic engagement with

                 the People’s Republic of China.                                         


With China rising in stature on the national stage, the resolution is educational, timely, and necessary to debate. Among the possible areas could be: Reforming segments of U.S./China trade; working with China to increase respect for human rights; working with China to better understand and manage its territorial ambitions in the South China Sea and other parts of Asia; how to work with China to best mitigate ongoing concerns over Taiwan; how to work with China to ensure sustainable energy and resource policies; how best to protect indigenous groups within China; how best to handle ongoing concerns over Tibet; how best to work together on the threat posed by world terrorism; and many others. Given the amount of literature on the topic, and the number of policy experts opining about China—teams can be assured of finding case ideas in a wide range of areas, with novel and unique affirmatives being proposed by policy experts almost monthly. The topic’s literature base ensures a dynamic range of case options. Negatives will have ample ground to explore the solvency of diplomatic or economic engagement; the effects of changes in China policy on surrounding Asian nations; the implications for U.S. allies in the region should any change to U.S. policy toward China occur; and the effect of change on the U.S. in light of its other national interests and obligations. Case specific disadvantages, again, given the literature base, will move beyond the generic, allowing for case advantages to be weighed by countervailing arguments—including arguments pertaining to the crack-down on rights within China; land use arguments, and specific species protection disadvantages; implications for China/Taiwan relations; labor specific disadvantages; and disadvantages dealing with economic issues specific to plan action (inflation, currency collapse, etc.), all directly related to case specific action in China. There will be plenty of case specific debate, given the literature base on the topic and the number of international experts who write on China.


View a Powerpoint presentation:What is Debate? 
All debaters must bring in a signed Debate Permission Slip  before the first debate.