[tweetmeme source=”@paullaucm” only_single=false]Not to be mixed up with the African Schools Debating Championships, the Asian Schools Debating Championships organized by De La Salle University have recently opened their invitation to participants.
I was part of a 9 member team that attended ASDC 2009 which despite the long, lengthy waiting, was an exceptional debating experience with as many debates as possible crammed into a day.
In keeping with the purpose of the ‘ASIAN’ Schools Debating Championships, amongst the only webpage completed at their website was the organizers plans for the ‘ASIAN HIGH SCHOOLS DEBATE COUNCIL’ (http://www.asdc2010.com/council.html) which sets out further details. Perhaps after having strongly established ASDC as an important event, DLSU can begin to aid in the process of having the competition tour asia on a yearly basis, thereby expanding its reach and bringing different countries to the field.
As night began to fall on the 4th of May, the conclusion to yet another six month campaign for the Sing Tao Inter-School Debating Competition Championship, the biggest of its kind in Hong Kong, remained up in the air. The stage was set, the lights switched on and the seats filled at the Queen Elizabeth Stadium, as a young South Island School and a confident looking La Salle College strolled onto the stage with Diocesan Boys School as chairperson and timekeeper. In what would turn out to be the youngest and most contentious finals of recent times, history was to be made.
On the one hand, La Salle College aimed to become only the 5th school to win back-to-back championships and successfully defend the trophy they had won last year. Interestingly, there were three new faces on stage led by national team member Griffith Cheng as captain. The team remained unchanged from the semi-finals with Nicky Anto and Donald Lam as 1st and 2nd speaker respectively.
The proposition South Island School also featured national team member Tiffany Chung as 1st speaker. Ivan Siu returned as 2nd speaker in the team led by captain Paul Lau (that’s me!) who holds the record as the youngest Grand Final participant whether as floor-speaker (Year 7, Primary 6) or as a debater (Year 9, Form 2). Despite being the only member of the 2008 SIS team, the entire squad was looking to recapture the cup that had been lost last year to become only the 2nd school to grab three championships by winning every other year. Following Island School’s victory in the 2nd, 4th and 6th edition, a win for SIS would cement its position as amongst the best debating teams in Hong Kong after winning the 21st and 23rd edition.
The two teams clashed on the motion that “The FIFA World Cup matches should be broadcast live, on free to air television, free of charge”. The ensuing battle had SIS arguing for the status quo citing the low coverage of Pay TV and need to widen access to the FIFA World Cup on a local and global scale. The opposition, coached by national team coach Greg Forse, argued against a change in policy, nothing the ineffectiveness of a new policy. They also looked at the availability and culture of public viewing in Hong Kong alone as reasons why people didn’t need free to air World Cup broadcasts, especially when it would bankrupt FIFA. SIS countered in the free debate, arguing that FIFA hadn’t gone bankrupt despite having free-to-air as a majority of TV broadcasts in 2002, an event that LSC’s captain Griffith called an exception. In his conclusion, Griffith returned to his opening statement, appearing to challenge the definition arguing that the motion implied some form of change. In the debate’s last speech, Paul quoted FIFA”s contract with broadcasters saying that the proposition had correctly argued for the motion and the status quo.
Over 170 teams, six months, countless hours and hundreds of debate motions went into this year’s Sing Tao Inter-School Debating Competition. But there could only be one winner. South Island School defeated defending champions La Salle College in the final showdown.
THE final of the 25th Sing Tao Inter-School Debating Competition was held at Queen Elizabeth Stadium in Wan Chai last Tuesday. The final motion was: The FIFA World Cup matches should be broadcast live on free-to-air TV stations free of charge. The affirmative team was South Island School and the opposition was defending champions La Salle College.
At first glance many thought the motion wasn’t even debatable as, let’s face it, who wouldn’t want to watch World Cup matches for free? The defending champions, charged with opposing the motion, had a serious fight on their hands if they were going to repeat their triumph of last year. Both teams convincingly delivered their messages.
The finalists for the 25th Sing Tao Inter-School Debating Competition have now been confirmed after South Island School and La Salle College beat their opponents in the semi-finals stage last Saturday.
La Salle College and South Island School will enter the Grand Final of the competition on May 4 after triumphant victories over their opponents during the semi-finals stage held at Ying Wah College last Saturday.
Both teams will enter the English Section of the Grand Final – to be held at the Queen Elizabeth Stadium, Wan Chai, on May 4 – to fight for the coveted title of the best English debating team in Hong Kong.
The Hong Kong government’s policies were taken apart by the students in these semi-final debates. First up were La Salle College and Marymount Secondary School debating whether the government should relax the income limit for the Home Ownership Scheme (HOS).
2 teams remain standing after months of preparation, debates and speeches in the 25th Sing Tao Inter-School Debating Competition. After 3 rounds, the quarter finals and the semi final competitions, the teams that will progress into the Grand Final have been decided.
In the Semi Finals held today, La Salle College beat Marymount Secondary School on the motion ‘The government should relax the income limit for the Home Ownership Scheme’ 3-0 with Griffith Cheng snatching the Best Speaker award. South Island School beat Diocesan Boys School 2-1 on the motion that ‘The extension of repayment for the Non-means Tested Loan Scheme does more good than harm’. Paul Lau of SIS was the Best Speaker
This means the grand finals of the 25th Sing Tao Debating Competition will be between La Salle College and South Island School. La Salle will attempt to defend their title with the second consecutive championship, a feat completed only by 4 other schools. South Island School will attempt to become only the second team to win it 3 times in 5 years with exactly 1 year between each championship.
Affirmative : South Island School
Opposition : La Salle College
Grand Final Draw
Grand Final Tickets
This years Grand Final will again be held at Queen Elizabeth Stadium on the Tuesday 4th May, 2010. Interested parties can get tickets for the Grand Finals in the following methods.
The quarter-final of the 25th Sing Tao Inter-School Debating Competition was held on 27 March. Eight schools’ debating teams gathered at Raimondi College to fight for a semi-final place.
MARYMOUNT Secondary School and La Salle College were the first two schools to book their place in the semi-finals. The early session of debates developed into heated battles with Diocesan Girls’ losing out to Marymount Secondary School. The two schools went head-to-head on the motion ‘The government’s decision not to go ahead with the reconstruction project on Wing Lee Street does more good than harm’.
Right after that, La Salle College knocked out St Paul’s College when the schools debated the motion ‘The government should impose a mandatory annual medical check-up for professional drivers’.
In the second session, South Island School came out on top against Stewards Pooi Kei College, followed by Diocesan Boys’ School winning a hard-earned victory against Good Hope School when they argued the affirmative side of the motion ‘Hong Kong should establish a competition law’.
South Island School and Stewards Pooi Kei College debated the motion ‘Government allocation of land for private universities development brings more good than harm’ resulting in a brilliant and engaging performance.
The teams demonstrated excellent logical thinking skills as well as superior debating skills. Although Stewards Pooi Kei College, the opposition team, cited a great number of local and overseas examples, the affirmative team managed to fend off their articulate arguments with quick responses, brilliant interrogative skills and straight-to-the-point attacks.
After 4 months of hard work and 4 rounds of debates in that period of time, the field of teams fro the 25th Sing Tao Inter-School Debating Competition has been whittled down to just 4 teams.
Marymount Secondary School hope to make history with their first Grand Final appearance in recent times. La Salle College will try to make history repeat itself with their 2nd Grand Final appearance in as many years. If they succeed, South Island School will make their 3rd Grand Final appearance in 5 years. Not to be outdone, Diocesan Boys School who won the Chinese Section last year, will hope to repeat the feat this year in the English section.
The Sing Tao Draw
The decision as to who makes the Grand Final will fall onto the hands of yet unknown adjudicators. What we do know is that on 17th April 2010 the 4 teams will face-off at Ying Wa Girls School. The details of the 2 contest are :