Published on: Friday, January 15, 2021

On Tuesday 12 January three of our debaters competed in the first round of the English-Speaking Union (ESU) Schools MACE, competing against Truro School, Colyton Grammar and Taunton School via Zoom. Proposing the motion “This House would introduce quotas for women on company boards”, we faced Taunton School, arguing that the status quo needs drastic change and such a motion would correct decades of injustice – and have economic and social benefits.

Lottie K opened the debate, Louis B continued the proposition case and Cameron B summarised. Faced with passionate opposition from Taunton School, our debaters were able to attack the opposition’s claims that additional women would a be a burden on firms and that women did not have the necessary skill levels to competently carry out a board room role despite the growing numbers of women holding MBAs. The judges remarked on Lottie’s calm and clear definition which laid the foundation debate, Louis’ detailed research, which further strengthened the case, and Cameron’s well structured summary, which brought the key points of clash into focus. We look forward to discovering who we will be debating against in the second round.

The English-Speaking Union’s Schools’ Mace, the oldest and largest debating competition for schools in England, hones your students’ debate skills in a fun, competitive environment. Working in teams, students enhance their speech-writing, public speaking and critical thinking, helping them to excel both in and out of school and giving them a sense of pride in themselves and their achievements.

Under the direction of Mr Ridley and senior pupils, debating practice takes place on Wednesdays afternoon. If any pupils would like to join in, they would be more than welcome whatever their experience, and could observe at first if so they choose. Please do email Louis B or Mr Ridley for details.

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