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All Saints wins Gold Coast Debating grand final

After a hotly contested debating season, our talented Open A debating team cinched an incredible victory against a field of teams that, in most cases, were years their senior.

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More than 40 All Saints students across 10 teams participated in four different divisions of the Gold Coast Debating (GCD) competition this year.

While it was an exceptional achievement to have at least one team from each division reach the semi-final round, it was our Open A team that went the distance.

Annalisa Choy, Olivia Mahon, Daniel McLaren-Kennedy, Caleb Robert and Tara Sabet competed in the GCD grand final in October against Coomera Anglican College.

This debate was particularly hard-won, given the All Saints team consisted of Year 10 and 11 students while Coomera fielded a team of Year 12s.

On the road to the Grand Final, the All Saints team also won a victory against the Year 12 St Hilda’s team in the semi-final round where Caleb Robert (Year 10) was named speaker of the night by a panel of three adjudicators.

While the early season may not have gone exactly to plan, Caleb says his team truly hit their stride in the end.

“After a bit of a slow start, finding out we were in the finals and then doing so well from that point was a real highlight for me – just seeing how much our team grew over the season,” says Caleb.

“The semi-final was a particularly incredible win for us. Everyone did an amazing job, from the first minute in the prep room right up to the very end. We argued hard, we spoke well, and we engaged with the debate.”

Caleb encourages anyone who might be considering debating to attend afternoon debating club in 2022.

“Being able to speak well and to argue your point is a fundamental life skill that debating teaches very well,” he says.

“I think the grand final was an example of school debating at its best, and we hope it inspired younger students to learn more about what is possible through debating.”