2018 February/March Rostrum

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VOLUME 92 ISSUE 3 F E B./M A R. 2018


EDUCATION FOR ALL I became a professor because I wanted to engage in the kinds of intellectual inquiry that I first learned to love while cutting cards and writing frontlines for Policy Debate.” — Brittney Cooper, Class of 1998



Ensuring Access to Speech and Debate for Students with Disabilities: Legal Basics


• Black History Month Resources • Tips for National Speech and Debate Education Day • 2018 National Tournament Preview

JULY 28–31, 2018


Join us in Phoenix, Arizona! The second annual NSDA National Conference will be held at the Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs Resort.

Early Bird Discount ........................ Rates expire March 5, 2018 $ 249 Members | $ 349 Non-Members Register Today:


The University of Texas National Institute in Forensics is one of the largest and most successful summer speech and debate workshops in the country. UTNIF has a reputation for engaging students from across the nation in the kind of training that leads rather than follows performative and argumentative trends. UTNIF students have won championships and final rounds at the National Speech & Debate Association National Tournament in Extemp, Humorous Interp, Dramatic Interp, Poetry, the House, the Senate, Policy Debate, Public Forum, and more. Our students consistently excel at the TOC and NIETOC. Join us this summer and see for yourself why UTNIF has made such an impact on speech and debate education for over 20 years.

2018 UTNIF Program Dates Individual Events main session

June 30 – July 14

Individual Events (with extension)

June 30 – July 18 June 24 – Aug 7

CX 6 Week Summer Survivors CX Session 1 (Skills, Theories of Power & Resistance, Sophomores) CX Session 2 (Skills, Theories of Power & Resistance)

June 24 – July 14 July 18 – Aug 7

CX Novice

July 21 – July 29

Public Forum Session 1

June 30 – July 12

Public Forum Session 2

July 21 – Aug 2


July 21 – Aug 4

Lincoln-Douglas (with extension)

July 21 – Aug 7

UTNIF Individual Events www.utspeech.net UTNIF debate camp www.utdebatecamp.com UTNIF Contact katerichey@utexas.edu

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In this Issue : VOLUME 92 : ISSUE 3 : FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018

From the Cover 39


Education for All – Ensuring Access to Speech and Debate for Students with Disabilities: Legal Basics by Thomas A. Mayes and Perry A. Zirkel

Governance and Leadership 9

Board of Directors December Minutes


Thirteen Candidates Seek Board Election in 2018


From the Editor


2017-2018 Topics

Member Resources 30

Curriculum Corner


Resource Roundup

National Tournament

Community 18

Professional Development: Join Us This Summer for the 2018 National Speech & Debate Conference


National Speech and Debate Education Day: Tips for Making March 2 a Success!


Inclusion: Our Commitment to Our Community


We’ve Updated the Code of Honor!


From Germany to Croatia: USA Debate Experiences Big Wins, Different Cultures, and Team Bonding by Ella Michaels

Recognition 50

Alumni Angles: Brittney Cooper by Megan Muncie


District in Detail: Sierra (CA) by Allie Kelly and Emily Weaver


Coach Profile: Dr. Barbara Lowe by Erin Swope


Diamond Coach Recognition


Welcome New Schools


From Your Local Hosts


Overview of High School Tournament Logistics


Overview of Middle School Tournament Logistics


Nationals Advice: Attending Our Tournament for the First Time? You’ve Got This!

Like us on Facebook speechanddebate Share with us on Instagram speechanddebate Follow us on Twitter speechanddebate

OUR MISSION Rostrum shares best practices, resources, and opportunities that connect, support, and inspire a diverse community committed to empowering students through competitive speech and debate.


From the Editor

Board of Directors

As we approach our three biggest events of the year, we pause in this issue to reflect on inclusion in education, hear stories on this topic from our community, and share some of our improvements and goals for the future.


Our cover story focuses in on one of the sessions from our inaugural National Conference held in 2017. Authors Thomas A. Mayes and Perry A. Zirkel examine how two federal laws protect students with disabilities from discrimination in education and apply these legal basics to situations that you may confront as a speech and debate professional. Read their explanations and walk through ten hypothetical situations on page 39. This issue also features updates on our inclusion efforts as an organization and as a community. Check out the new and improved Code of Honor and the reasoning behind the shift on page 47. We also reflect internally on the topic of “education for all” by sharing the steps we are taking to advance inclusion by the end of June—including acting on recommendations from the 2017 Coaches’ Caucuses, making changes to the National Tournament, releasing tools for local tournaments, diversifying our resource offerings, and more. I encourage you to read the 13 columns submitted by candidates for election to the Board of Directors, starting on page 10. Each of these individuals would bring a unique perspective, suggestions for improvement and empowerment, and years of experience to the table. Be on the lookout for the online ballot in April! You can also catch an exclusive look at our three biggest events of the year. We share an overview of our National Speech and Debate Education Day plans (see page 34), a preview of the 2018 National Tournament (see page 22), and a sneak peak of what to expect at our 2018 National Conference in Phoenix, Arizona (see page 18). We hope these details excite you and your team as you take on the second half of the school year. I hope your 2018 is off to a great start and that you find ideas and encouragement within these pages for promoting education for all.

Don Crabtree, President Missouri Pam Cady Wycoff, Vice President Minnesota David Huston Texas Jennifer Jerome Nebraska Dr. Tommie Lindsey, Jr. California Pamela K. McComas Kansas James W. “Jay” Rye, III Alabama Timothy E. Sheaff Iowa



J. Scott Wunn Executive Director National Speech & Debate Association


Dr. Polly Reikowski, Admin Rep Minnesota


401 Railroad Place, West Des Moines, IA 50265-4730 | Phone (920) 748-6206 J. Scott Wunn, Editor and Publisher Steve Schappaugh, Managing Editor Vicki Pape, Assistant Editor Amy Seidelman, Content Editor Deano Pape, Copy Editor Emily Bratton, Graphic Design Assistant Emily Kriegel, Advertising Coordinator

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Rostrum (ISSN 1073-5526), Copyright © 2018 by the National Speech & Debate Association (NSDA), is published five times per year (Sept., Nov., Feb., Apr., and Aug.) by the NSDA, 401 Railroad Pl., West Des Moines, IA 50265-4730. Business and Editorial Offices: NSDA, 401 Railroad Pl., West Des Moines, IA, 50265-4730. Accounting and Circulation Offices: NSDA, 401 Railroad Pl., West Des Moines, IA 50265-4730. Call (920) 748-6206 to subscribe. Periodicals postage is paid at Des Moines, IA 50318, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Please send address changes to Rostrum, c/o NSDA, 401 Railroad Pl., West Des Moines, IA 50265-4730. Rostrum provides a forum for the speech and debate community. The opinions expressed by contributors are their own and not necessarily the opinions of the NSDA, its officers, or its members. The National Speech & Debate Association does not guarantee advertised products and services unless sold directly by the NSDA.



Monica Rego New York Thomas Rollins Virginia Robert Runcie Florida

To learn more about the Board and for contact information, please visit www.speechanddebate.org/ meet-the-team.



Current topics, voting links, and resources available at:

www.speechanddebate.org/topics Member students and one chapter advisor per school are eligible to vote!

2018-2019 Policy Debate Topic IMMIGRATION — Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially reduce its restrictions on legal immigration to the United States. According to the Pew Research Center, 70% of voters listed immigration as “very important” to their decision in the 2016 election—more than social security, education, and environment. With extensive news coverage on immigration, even novice students have a basic working knowledge of immigration, making the experience of learning Policy Debate more interesting. Advanced debaters can employ nuanced and specific critical and policy arguments. Immigration reform offers a rare example of federal policy where the key questions do not often involve spending money. Instead, the debate will focus on matters of social justice and fairness. Defenders of immigration reform argue America is a nation of immigrants, and a progressive immigration policy will strengthen the economy, as well as enrich our culture. Affirmative cases might focus on particular categories of Visas—their criteria and numerical limits; they might focus on different populations, or areas of the world; they might examine types of skills under-represented in the United States. Opponents have voiced the concern that immigrants take jobs from Americans and might pose a threat to public safety. Examples of possible affirmative cases are comprehensive immigration reform, amnesty for immigrants already living in the United States, reversing restrictive state laws, changes to visa/quota requirements, the DREAM Act, and increasing work permits for immigrants with special skills in medicine or engineering, among others. Negative positions could focus on the economic and employment harms of increased immigration, increased risk of a terrorist attack, disruption of federalism, and the political implications of immigration reform.

Send us your suggestions for PF topic areas and LD resolutions! Access the online submission forms by visiting our website: www.speechanddebate.org/topics

MARCH 2018

Public Forum Debate

Resolved: On balance, the current Authorization for Use of Military Force gives too much power to the president.


Lincoln-Douglas Debate

Resolved: The United States ought to provide a universal basic income.

The NSDA also offers a “Civil Disobedience” resolution that may be used during the first two months of a novice season. Coaches are encouraged to check with tournament hosts in their area before exclusively prepping for one topic over another.


Policy Debate

Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase its funding and/or regulation of elementary and/or secondary education in the United States.


Big Questions Debate

Resolved: Humans are fundamentally different from other animals.


Dear School Administrators, It is with great pride that I submit a letter in support of speech and debate programs and share the amazing impact the activity is having in the Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD). The idea began during the 2015-2016 school year when the District partnered with the Kiwanis Club of Santa Ana to host a pilot program at all intermediate schools in the District as a way for students to develop and perfect their communication skills, which are highly valuable in the workplace. In March 2016, 100 students demonstrated the art of speech and debate in their first tournament. To date there are approximately 600 students participating in the program. AUSD’s speech and debate program has a full-time Curriculum Specialist, Mr. Sal Tinajero, who is an experienced educator and speech/debate coach who works closely with staff, teachers, and students to promote and sustain the program. Santa Ana is the seventh largest school district in California and Orange County, with a student population of 94% Latino and 60% English Learners. With a student population of 50,000, 91% qualify for free-andreduced lunch. What makes this program so powerful is the very rare opportunity to offer a speech and debate program at all intermediate schools in a school district, particularly one the size of Santa Ana Unified with a high student population of Latinos and English Language Learners. A program of this magnitude is typically reserved for high school. Our students are taking full advantage of the opportunities associated with speech and debate. They frequently comment how the program has strengthened their critical thinking and public speaking skills while keeping them engaged. One student shared with me how fearful she was of speaking in public before participating in speech and debate. Now, she can proudly speak with confidence in public with increased self-esteem. This will support her academics and social skills. The benefits are endless and will provide your students an experience that will last a lifetime. Sincerely,

Stefanie Phillips, Ed.D. Superintendent of Schools Santa Ana Unified School District, California

Find this and other letters of advocacy on our website:

www.speechanddebate.org/resources 6


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1925 SOCIET Y The National Speech & Debate Association is grateful to acknowledge the following 1925 Society members for pledging a generous planned gift contribution. Phyllis Flory Barton

Albert Odom, Jr.

James Copeland

Capt. Joseph L. and Jan Pizzo

Don and Ann Crabtree

Dr. Polly and Bruce Reikowski

Dr. Mike Edmonds

Donus and Lovila Roberts

A. C. Eley

James Rye, III

Vickie and Joe Fellers

Steve and Anna Schappaugh

David and Judy Huston

David Seikel

Jennifer Jerome

Sandra Silvers

Harold Keller

Richard Sodikow

Kandi King

William Woods Tate, Jr.

Cherian and Betsy Koshy

Nicole and Darrel Wanzer-Serrano

Dr. Tommie Lindsey, Jr. Pam and Ray McComas H. B. Mitchell Lanny and B. J. Naegelin

Cheryl Watkins J. Scott and Megan Wunn Joe and Pam Wycoff

To join the 1925 Society, or to learn more about making a planned gift to the National Speech & Debate Association, please contact Nicole Wanzer-Serrano at nicole@speechanddebate.org.


Leadership Board of Directors Minutes


December 6, 2017

he NSDA Board of Directors held a virtual online meeting December 6, 2017. Present were President Don Crabtree, Vice President Pam Cady Wycoff, Dave Huston, Jennifer Jerome, Pam McComas, Dr. Polly Reikowski, Tom Rollins, Jay Rye, and Tim Sheaff.

Travel Policy

President Crabtree called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m.

Moved by Wycoff, seconded by McComas: “Approve the amended Code of Honor.” Passed: 8-0-1 Aye: Crabtree, Wycoff, Houston, Jerome, McComas, Reikowski, Rollins, Rye Abstain: Sheaff

As a non-profit, stewardship of our resources is essential for the organization. In order to be good stewards of donor and membership dollars, the Travel and Entertainment Reimbursement Policy provides guidance on appropriate travel procedures to NSDA travelers; describes the types of expenditures that are and are not reimbursable by the NSDA; and informs travelers of their responsibilities to control and report travel and other expenses. The policy applies to all NSDA elected Board of Directors, staff, consultants, and others who are requested by NSDA management to incur expenditures on behalf of the NSDA. A copy will be provided to all applicable persons.

The updated Code of Honor is available online at www.speechanddebate.org/code-of-honor. For an overview of changes, see the article on page 47.

No other motions were submitted. The remainder of the evening laid groundwork for further development of the organization’s 3-5 year strategic plan. The meeting adjourned at 6:00 p.m.

Code of Honor

Moved by Rollins, seconded by McComas: “Adopt the Travel Policy as proposed.” Passed: 9-0 (Crabtree, Wycoff, Houston, Jerome, McComas, Reikowski, Rollins, Rye, Sheaff)




Early Bird Registration Ends March 5, 2018 This year’s conference will feature a leadership track! To learn more, see page 18 or visit our website today.


$249 – Members $349 – Non-Members

JULY 28–31, 2018 ROSTRUM | FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 9


Thirteen Candidates Seek Board Election in 2018

This April, the National Speech & Debate Association will once again hold its biennial election, which will choose four directors to serve on the national Board of Directors and establish an order for alternates. The four elected directors will each serve a four-year term.

ELECTION OVERVIEW Voting via electronic balloting will be made available to all member schools April 2, 2018. Voting concludes April 27, 2018. Each school shall vote for up to four candidates. ALL ACTIVE SCHOOL CHAPTERS WILL COUNT AS ONE VOTE. This is a change from the strength based voting system of the past. The votes will be officially audited and then announced by May 4, 2018. The four individuals receiving the most votes will earn seats on the Board from August 1, 2018, to July 31, 2022. The remaining candidates will be alternates. If an elected Board position should become vacant prior to the next election, alternates, in order of finish, will be invited to the seat. For an explanation of Board roles and responsibilities, please visit our website at www.speechanddebate.org/nsda-board-bestpractices. The following columns are unedited and provided exactly as submitted by each candidate. The names appear in an order drawn by lot.



Heather Walters Greenwood Laboratory School Missouri It would be an honor to serve on the Board of Directors of the NSDA. I believe my unique experience in speech and debate can bring a distinct voice to the table and provide the opportunity for unprecedented collaboration. For the past several years, I have worked with students and coaches at multiple levels of competition (middle school, high school, and college). I currently direct the middle school and high school speech and debate programs at Greenwood Laboratory School in Missouri and I am the Assistant Director of Forensics at Missouri State University. The community is stronger together and I seek to be a bridge to allow the diverse perspectives that exist throughout our activity to be heard for the benefit of all of our students. I have served in leadership positions throughout the speech and debate community. I have experience as a regional representative for the Mid-America Region of the Cross-Examination Debate Association, NDT representative to the college topic committee, as well as a District Chair and District Committee member in the Ozark District of the NSDA in Missouri. In these roles, I have gained valuable insights on what many people believe is necessary to secure the future of our activity. I can share these perspectives for the benefit of the organization. I feel strongly about doing all that I can to grow more meaningful participation (both in quantity and quality) in speech and debate at my institutions and at other schools; and in doing more to help create an activity that is teaching these students things that will make life successful for them beyond their participation in speech and debate. The NSDA is constantly creating new mechanisms to help coaches succeed and I am passionate about many of them. Presenting and learning from others at the inaugural NSDA National Conference was invigorating and I am excited to present again in Phoenix in 2018. I hope events like this continue to grow and that more people than ever can take advantage of the resources that so many gifted coaches in the organization have to offer. The NSDA has given me so much, including recently naming me State Educator of the Year for Missouri—a fantastic honor given I work with so many wonderful and talented coaches. It is time that I give back and I am deeply motivated to do my best work on the NSDA Board of Directors.

2018 Board Election

Byron Arthur

Jay Rye

Holy Cross School Louisiana

The Montgomery Academy Alabama

As the National Speech & Debate Association continues to expand its operations and function very much like a corporation, I am hopeful that my professional expertise will be helpful. My years working as a corporate communications professional will hopefully contribute to the continued growth in awareness and favorability of the NSDA brand. Second, my experience as a practicing trial attorney will add a unique and important perspective to this fiduciary Board as it makes important decisions with legal implications. I am humbled that I have been able to offer service to the National Speech & Debate Association as a member of the Louisiana District Committee, the Public Forum Wording Committee, the Ad-hoc Committee studying the future of Public Forum, and even quite a few years ago as one of the members of the Lincoln-Douglas Topic Committee. It has been my honor to work as an NSDA National Tournament Official and they were even brave enough to allow me to give the Keynote Address at the Leadership Conference in 2016. Two years ago when I offered myself for the Board of Directors, I expressed concerns about the issues in our country. Those issues have intensified. The folks in urban centers offer screams of discontent and the people in rural areas have their own set of fears. I am confident that each group has valid points. As these adults are yelling at each other I realize that might all be very different had they met during their teen years at a speech tournament. It is here that hearts are softened and minds are sharpened. We must continue to promote inclusion and realize that students in the heart of the city as well as the far reaches of a rural county all need this activity. In addition, we must continue to develop our next generation of educators. This includes not only recruitment, mentoring, and support, but also ethics and a code of conduct that will guide and demand appropriate behavior from the adults who are charged with the care of young people. My desire is to one day leave this activity and have it be better than I found it. As such, I offer myself for service on the National Speech & Debate Association Board of Directors.

The NSDA has been a significant part of my life since joining in 1985. Growing up in Alabama, I never would have imagined I would be allowed to help shape the future of speech & debate. YOU have placed your trust in me and words can never adequately describe what an honor it has been to serve you as a member of the Board of Directors. As a coach of all events of the NSDA, my direct involvement reflects my belief in all of the events we have to offer. Over the past 4 years I have: • Observed and participated in the Policy Debate Topic Wording process of the NFHS • Supported the addition of Informative Speaking & POI as Main Events • Organized the writing of the NSDA Code of Ethics for Coaches • Served as the first Congress Ombudsman at Nationals • Advocated for a National Speech & Debate Education Day • Assisted in raising money as the Chair of the Development Committee for the Board • Hosted NSDA Nationals in 2017 • Oversaw the addition of World Schools Debate in 2015 and the expansion in 2017 • Articulated the need for OUR FIRST Education Conference which materialized in 2017 In addition, I had the privilege of visiting and participating as a judge at 6 different District Tournaments outside of my own. The NSDA Districts of New Jersey, Tennessee, Georgia Northern Mountain, North Carolina West, South Carolina, and Mississippi welcomed me to their respective tournaments, and I learned so much. Discussing with coaches the obstacles they face along with the successes they have experienced, has given me a better understanding of what we as professionals face. Overcoming Our Obstacles and Celebrating Our Successes motivates my actions on the Board. We should build upon the Speech & Debate Education Day by advocating for Speech & Debate Education to State & Federal lawmakers. We should assess the size of the National Tournament and ask ourselves, “Are we too big?” and/or “What is too big?” We should become more active in assisting the people who want to coach and with the schools that need a coach—become a coach/school matchmaker! We should address the issues that rural and small schools face, while continuing the growth in our urban communities. I humbly ask that you use 1 of your 4 votes to vote for me, Jay Rye, so I may continue to serve you and the NSDA. Thank You! ROSTRUM | FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 11

Jay Stubbs

Crawford Leavoy

Bellaire High School Texas

Durham Academy North Carolina

Speech and debate is the best activity a student can be involved in. My career has been spent promoting this activity and serving in leadership roles on the local, state and national levels. For the last two years I have been the alternate on the NSDA Board of Directors. I am asking for your support to become a member of the Board of Directors. Our students and coaches are the lifeline of NSDA. I have coached in schools that are both small and large. I have coached in economically disadvantaged schools. Our organization is so diverse and I will continue to listen so that everyone can feel that they have a voice in the future of our activity. Many of the issues we face in our events involve technology and ethics. While we are a competitive activity I believe we have a responsibility to make this an ethical activity. We must continue to examine our speech and debate events to incorporate new technology where possible without losing the core of what made our events great. Debate evidence and sources for our interp scripts are amongst some of the issues that we will continue to face. NSDA needs to hear from coaches so our rules can evolve to keep up with the times. Increasing student participation is a key to our organizations growth. Examining events with declining participation as well as seeking new events is needed. While I am an advocate of all events, I am very proud of our efforts to expand the importance of Congressional Debate. I will always remember that the policies of the NSDA should be in the best interest of our students. Our organization is only as strong as our coaches. So many of our new coaches depend on education materials from our website. I would like to see us expand those materials and get them into the hands of as many coaches as possible. No one knows our activity better than our coaches. I encourage all coaches to voice their thoughts on issues that impact their students whether that be future policy or upcoming topics for debate. NSDA continues to address issues that make coaching and participating in speech and debate better than ever before. I would appreciate the opportunity to serve this activity by becoming a member of the NSDA Board of Directors. I humbly ask for your support of my election.



Over the past 18 years, I have been involved in speech and debate in multiple capacities. As a competitor, I found that this activity can give students a place to call home and can empower them to express their voices. As a volunteer judge, I learned that giving back is truly one of the highest forms of service. Now as a coach, I have been honored to watch the life-changing influence that we can have on our students, our colleagues, and our nation. However, the longer I have been around, the more I have wondered, “How can we make it better?” It is this fundamental question that drives me every day to do more and give more than the day before. The National Speech and Debate Association has given me numerous opportunities to serve our community. As a member of the LD Wording Committee, as the District Chair for the Tarheel East District, as the Moderator for the LGBT+ Coaches’ Caucus, and as a member of ad-hoc committees, I have found ways to improve our organization. Part of making it better centers around the growth of our activity. I believe that our organization needs a new approach to the creation and sustaining of speech and debate programs. I believe that it is the role of the Board of Directors to not only guide our organization, but to work to grow and to support our programs. I also believe that the growth of our organization centers around our ability to attract and retain new coaches. I have seen many young, enthusiastic coaches walk away from the activity due to lack of adequate training and support. We need to be working on developing the future leaders of our activity. The Board of Directors should reflect the demographics of our coaches. We need the energy of younger and fresher voices at the top of our organization to complement the wisdom of those who have been around for decades. I want to tackle these problems head on. I will serve not only as your representative on the Board, but as an advocate for the work you do every day. I love speech and debate because it has given me opportunities in my life that I never thought possible; it open doors for students that would have been shut otherwise. It is time for us to make our Association better—one day at a time.

2018 Board Election

Jeffrey Miller

Chris Riffer

Marist School Georgia

Blue Valley High School Kansas

Fifteen years ago was a different time in speech and debate—monthly Rostrums in the mail, tournaments tabbed on index cards—or, for the most progressive, TRPC, and the National Tournament featured just eight main events. Fifteen years ago, I was a sophomore in high school and singularly focused on debate. I waited patiently at the beginning of every month for my coach to check her mailbox for the Rostrum, and I used my dad’s Gateway 2000 desktop to simulate thousands (yes, thousands) of tournaments to learn the TRPC software. I tried to learn every event to increase my odds of participating at the National Tournament (which I eventually did, albeit not very successfully). Much has changed since then, but one thing remains constant: my desire to learn and advocate for speech and debate. As a student, this activity provided me with the opportunity to find my own voice; as a coach, I strive to empower students to do the same. In five terms as head of my State Association, my efforts contributed to a 300% increase in participation statewide. I have also served nine years on my NSDA District Committee, which opened the door for national service. In recent years, I have co-chaired the Public Forum Wording Committee and presented on Inclusion & Diversity at the National Leadership Conference. Each of these experiences allowed me to collaborate with educators from across the country, whose diverse perspectives shape our Association and gave me new insight on how to increase access to speech and debate for students in my school and community. Chairing the 2017 Middle School National Tournament helped me realize anew the importance of the thousands of young students who find a place to belong in speech and debate. We have a unique opportunity to empower those 6th graders to use their voices not only in middle school, but to spark leadership that continues throughout their lives. Eleven years of coaching at two vastly different schools have strengthened my commitment as an advocate for speech and debate for all students. I recognize that you advocate for your teams on a daily basis at your school, at your favorite restaurant, at car washes, bake sales, and with every breath. I would be honored to serve on the NSDA National Board of Directors to help you advocate for speech and debate, and for the Association.

In 1985 as a sophomore at Shawnee Mission West High School, I was introduced to the power of speech and debate. Nine years later, I became a teacher and coach because that power was something I felt was important to spread to new generations. As a student, the points I earned in competition and the national tournaments I attended captured my interest and motivated me, as an educator I started to learn of the potential power our organization possessed in education as a whole. I believe that the teaching of speech and debate is one of the most important things a secondary school can do and our organization is sitting at a unique precipice to make a mark in a critical field at a critical time in our nation’s history. I have taught and coached every event and contest the NSDA offers at the state and national level in 24 years of education. I feel like every type of debate, interpretation, and public speaking we do builds interests, develops talents, instills values and fosters growth in our students. I am passionate about and have opinions on all the events we do and I feel like I can speak with knowledge on all of them while I am willing to listen to everyone from every community and sub group of our organization to learn more and be of better service. The National Speech & Debate Association has been a part of my life and career for over 30 years. I find the National Tournament, the point system, and providing educational resources as the three pillars of the organization. As a national council member, I would work to strengthen these three pillars, make them as accessible to as many students as possible, and keep them meaningful to students, teachers, and administrators. While I hold the organization in high esteem, I don’t look at it through rose colored glasses. I see problems and challenges. I worry about the costs to schools and individuals to participate. I see us risking a collapse on the sheer size of our own growth. Frankly, I worry that our desire for the competitive side of our activity will blind us to the educational value inherent within it. These worries have several causes and therefore their solutions are not simple but I promise to work through those three pillars as a guiding principle in my decisionmaking.


Steve Meadows

Renee Motter

Danville High School Kentucky

Air Academy High School Colorado

I would be honored to serve my fellow coaches and their students on the Board of Directors. I want to continue the Association’s outreach into speech and debate education. I feel like the new emphasis in classroom work is exactly the right direction for NSDA. It has long been a passion of mine, and I have acted on that passion by founding my state’s speech education conference (SPEAK) as well as by serving on the NSDA National Curriculum and Conference committees. With the latter, I helped organize (and presented at) the first Education Conference, and I will do so again this summer. We must connect the Lone Ranger communication teachers in each school! I have been named Kentucky’s NSDA Educator of the Year and am a Finalist for the National award, and in 2015 I was the K-12 Communication Teacher of the Year for the National Communication Association. In 2005, I helped rewrite the Speech Communication PRAXIS certification test. Comm Ed has mattered to me personally and professionally a long time, and I feel I can be integral to this work for NSDA as a Board member. I love NSDA and have proudly served it over the years. I have served as Kentucky’s District Chair twenty times (first elected at age 24) and received the Ralph E. Carey Career Service Award plus Best Chair Communications in my tenure. I have published articles in the Rostrum and state newspapers and journals about the power of speech. At Nationals, I have worked in Speech Tab for many years including various leadership roles from event chair to public speaking director (my current gig). My students have been national finalists as well as “off to supplementals we go” kids, and I love being part of the machine that makes our huge speech and debate party happen for them. Over the years I have served multiple terms on the Boards of both Kentucky speech and debate leagues and know the collaboration and cooperation needed to make them productive. I have often communicated with NSDA Board members about my concerns in the organization, and I hope you will give me the chance to answer and act on those concerns for you. What I really want, to quote our wise friend Yoda (and my team’s motto), is to DO for you and for the NSDA. There is no try. If elected, I will do.



I believe in this activity. I believe in what it does for kids, and I believe in what it does for our world. While I did speech in high school and college, I never really thought about becoming a coach until that fateful day during my first interview when I was asked if I’d be willing to coach the debate team. “Sure! I’ll coach debate.” After all, I’d competed in speech, and I loved to debate with my family and friends; it seemed like a perfect fit. As you’ve probably guessed, I was in for a bit more than I initially expected, but the more I coached, the more I became a “lifer”; I knew I’d be involved in speech and debate for life because this is an activity that transforms everyone it touches. As I began my coaching career first in Minnesota and then in Colorado, I began to notice the transformational benefits for students involved in speech and debate. I quickly realized this activity’s immense impact on kids: giving the quiet kid the confidence to be heard; forcing the opinionated kid to look at all sides of an issue; allowing all kids the opportunity to learn from both success and failure; teaching kids that listening is just as necessary as being heard. Students in speech and debate learn the power of their voice: they learn how to find it, how to use it, how to refine it. In short, they learn how to channel their voice to make a difference and that is something worth preserving, worth protecting, worth propelling to the next level to impact and inspire even more voices. I’ve been fortunate to work with the NSDA to create curriculum and present at conferences to help even more students and coaches have access to the transformational benefits of speech and debate, and that work must be continued so that even beyond competition all students have a chance to find their voices. Now, I’d like to serve on the board of directors so that I can do even more to preserve, protect, and propel our activity to impact the world. With my voice, what I want to say is this: beyond the tournament, beyond the hardware, beyond the frustrations: you matter, what you do matters, and I’d like to ask for your vote so I can represent the voices of you and your students on the board.

2018 Board Election

Adam Jacobi

Jan Pizzo

Wis. High Sch. Forensic Assoc. Wisconsin

North Valley High School Oregon

“Give youth a voice.” I shared this mantra in a 2006 debate blog and brought it with me over the six years I worked at the National Office. While my full-time job today is to administer a state speech, debate, and theatre organization, I have remained involved in NSDA, because I believe in collaboration as a pathway toward a stronger activity overall. I still coach to stay connected. Speech and debate activities exist in a spectrum, from middle school through university, and from acting performance through theoretical debate; I have had the privilege to coach all events, at all levels. Over 20 years I have coached inner-city, rural, and international programs, and understand the unique needs in each context. Throughout my career I have listened to coaches from around the country. I learned we face similar challenges, yet some face additional barriers: geographic placement, school type, school setting, demographics, and socioeconomic factors. As NSDA’s middle school coordinator, I shepherded their modest, self-contained national tournament to the largescale event paired with the high school National Tournament. In addition to middle school, I also organized the National Congress, Student of the Year program, and a number of other educational partnerships. In each leadership effort, I aimed to be as inclusive as possible, to overcome barriers coaches and students face. I understand the following priorities are critical for NSDA: (1) actively embrace diversity in all forms: thought, race, gender, sexual orientation, faith, ability, socio-economic, geography, school composition, etc.; (2) provide transparency in decisionmaking, and to empower coach feedback in that process; (3) increase visibility of—and parity between—all competition events; (4) develop opportunities for more coach and student recognition locally and nationally; (5) increase collaboration between NSDA and state associations; (6) advocate for rank and file coaches, particularly those who feel disconnected or frustrated; (7) advance discussion of coach mental health and physical wellness; (8) promote further research on the impact and benefits of speech and debate; (9) further bolster middle school programming to sow seeds for sustained participation in high school and beyond; and (10) continue supporting coaches—with resources, training, and on-demand answers to questions. As an educator who treasures everything this noble honorary society stands for, I believe I bring talent of myriad experiences, and a commitment of time toward service in leading this organization forward. I respectfully ask for your support of my candidacy. Learn more at www.adamjacobi.com.

In 1977 when I joined the NFL as a competitor at Cherry Creek High School in Colorado, I never dreamed that forty years later I would still voluntarily wake up at five o’clock in the morning on a Saturday, work until after dark, live on Subway sandwiches and Coca Cola, and happily repeat the process. I never would have thought I would be a coach or that my career path would go from assistant coaching at three large, upper middle class high schools to spending over ten years co-coaching in a tiny, economically disadvantaged rural school 150 miles from home with a student population of under 100 pupils. Making that drive for a decade, and essentially living in two dramatically different communities simultaneously, cemented my belief that while qualifying to the national tournament is amazing, most of us really cherish those incredible light bulb moments when the impact of our activity makes a life changing difference for a student. Over the past forty years, I have served the speech and debate community as a judge, coach, teacher, tournament administrator, district committee member, state officer, new coach mentor, and member of the national tournament tab staff. I was Oregon co-speech educator of the year for 20122013 and was inducted into the Oregon Speech Educator’s Hall of Fame in 2015. Currently I am the consulting coach at North Valley High School in Grants Pass, Oregon. As a member of an underserved minority, I believe in the importance of promoting the benefits of the NSDA to all students. In pursuit of this goal, I am one of the original members of the NSDA standing committee on inclusion, as well as the small and rural schools ad hoc committee. I am especially excited about the work of the coach caucuses and the feedback that comes from these forums. I believe in working toward the words of American director John Ridley who said, “For children, diversity needs to be real and not merely relegated to learning the names of the usual suspects during Black History Month or enjoying south-of-the-border cuisine on Cinco de Mayo. It means talking to and spending time with kids not like them so that they may discover those kids are in fact just like them.” Therefore, I humbly ask for your vote to become a member of the national board.


David Huston

Martha Benham

Colleyville Heritage High School Texas

Cherry Creek High School Colorado

I have had the privilege of serving on the Board of Directors for the past eight years. I’ve had the opportunity to be a part of a number of significant decisions and changes for the organization. I am proud of the work we have done on changing the organization’s brand, making needed updates to our evidence rules, supporting the development of curriculum resources to support speech and debate, and generally being a part of the hardest working group of people in the organization. It would be easy to say that we have accomplished so much, that there are few major things to accomplish in the next four years. That statement would be in error. In our current political climate, speech and debate is the most important curriculum to teach young people critical thinking and civil discourse. Speech and debate are critical parts of our educational systems. We must do everything we can to convince schools that students need speech and debate just as much as they do math, social studies, and the sciences. As our activity evolves, we must evolve with it. We owe it to our students to make sure that the hard work and performances in which they take part are judged in a fashion that is fair and equitable. It is especially critical that we do so in our current political and social climates. Fairness should be key. We have a critical need now to help our experienced and inexperienced judges do a better job of adjudicating our activities. Training judges is no longer a luxury; it must now be a necessity. Formal training should be developed, including testing of the rules, observing rounds and writing ballots that could then be evaluated. We would not test for the “right” decision, but whether or not judges can make an informed, objective decision. Given the chance, I will work diligently in the next four years to make such a process a reality. I’d like the opportunity to continue to do the work that I’ve had the privilege of doing for the past eight years. I thank you for your past support and look forward to continuing to work for you in the next four years.



Many of my fondest teenage memories are the countless debates and discussions with my father on a wide variety of current events topics ranging from natural disasters to government funding to Soviet influence. When I learned there was a debate team at my school, I knew I had to join. So, in 1986, I was beyond excited when I persuaded the Speech and Debate teacher to sign my registration form and allow me to join the class and the team! Speech and debate has been a driving force in my life since that day. I had no idea how much that signature would change my life and how much more excited I would be to compete, judge, coach, teach, learn, and work in the world of speech and debate. I often acknowledge that I have the best job in the world. I get to work with amazing students, parents, educators, administrators, and community members every day. I have had the opportunity to coach in three different schools and have faced some unique challenges along the way. I have also served on local, state, and national committees to share ideas and collaborate with others. I have served as the Colorado District Chair for more than 10 years. And, of course, there is teaching, coaching, fundraising, tournament hosting, and managing a team. I am happy to fill you in on the details of my experience anytime, but I want you to know that I want to advocate for you and for your kids. I want to listen to your concerns and work together to find solutions. I want to challenge ourselves to do more, to reach more kids, and to continue to change the world. I want to make your jobs easier, if there is any way to do it. I want you to know that I am willing to help you however I can. As we all know, speech and debate is a transformative activity that provides students the opportunity to develop their voice and to change the world around them. We also know that we cannot accomplish that work without the support of others. I would be honored to support and serve you as a member of the Board of Directors and would appreciate your vote in this year’s election.


Join Us This Summer!

July 28-31

Phoenix, Arizona


eing a speech and debate teacher is a lonely job. Even at large high schools, there is usually just one teacher in that field, so collaborating and sharing materials requires us to leave our school building. Having so many fellow Lone Rangers in one place makes sharing ideas, methods, and materials much easier!” This quote from Kentucky coach Steve Meadows encapsulates one of the main reasons coaches should consider attending this year’s National Conference. Join us July 28-31 in Phoenix, Arizona, for a unique opportunity to network, share best practices, dialogue about important

issues facing our community, and get a jump start on the 2018-2019 competition season. This year’s conference will feature a leadership track! In the past, we’ve held leadership conferences every other year. Now, we’re combining it with our National Conference so you can enjoy keynotes and networking while still participating in leadership discussions. Therefore, if you’re a leader, coach, or teacher in the speech and debate community, this conference has something for you. We plan to offer more than 40 engaging sessions that cover speech, debate, interpretation, team management, issues related to inclusion, and more! (See the sidebar for session highlights.) We will continue to update our website on an ongoing basis with more information about sessions as they are confirmed. Aside from the dynamic sessions, here are even more reasons to attend: • Stay at a resort with waterfalls, golf courses, and unique dining opportunities • Network with your elected Board members • Experience personal growth • Hear an inspirational speech from the 2018 NSDA National Educator of the Year Whether you’re new to speech and debate or a veteran, this conference will provide you with a meaningful experience. Share your radiant voice with like-minded individuals who want to continue empowering youth through speech and debate! Be sure to visit www.speechanddebate.org/ conferences to register and for up-todate information.

REGISTER TODAY! Early Bird Registration Ends March 5, 2018


Fostering Inclusivity and Safe Spaces at Tournaments: Best Practices — presented by Sarah Botsch-McGuinn

Big Fish No Pond: Teaching Debate in Isolated Regions — presented by Rosie Valdez and Chris Flowers

Fighting the Elitism Trap: How to Recruit, Retain, and Coach Low Income Students — presented by Karson Kalashian

A Semester of Speech and Debate: Scaffolding a Syllabus to Support Classroom Learning and Competition — presented by Nick Klemp

Empowering Student Voices and Leadership in a Competitive Setting — presented by Victor Silva A New Era of Advocacy: Our Engagement With Civil Discourse — presented by Kristen Stout and Heather Walters

Original Oratory: From One Teacher to Another — presented by Pam and Joe Wycoff

Radiant Speakers: Reconsidering Our Communication Criteria — presented by David Yastremski

$249 – Members $349 – Non-Members

www.speechanddebate.org/conferences 18

Here’s a snapshot of the 40 engaging sessions you will find at the 2018 National Speech & Debate Conference.

Written by Steve Schappaugh, Director of Community Engagement for the NSDA

AT IC, STUDENTS CAN: • Compete at the highest levels of


national and international competition. • Earn scholarships and college credit for participating in speech and debate. • Participate in all the available events. In debate, we compete in policy, Lincoln-Douglas, public forum and parliamentary debate. In speech, we compete in extemporaneous, oratory,

Illinois College is proud to sponsor Lincoln-Douglas Debate at the 2018 NSDA National Tournament.

informative, after-dinner, humorous/ dramatic, prose, poetry and duo.

To learn more about competing for the Illinois College Debate and Forensics Team, please contact Dr. Courtney Wright, Director of Debate & Forensics, at courtney.wright@ic.edu

An evidence project by the Harvard Debate Council

www.theveritasdebatelibrary.com ore an us a su scrip ion ased e idence ser ice The Veritas Debate Library is an online resource for all of our de a e eac in needs e offer uali e idence pac e s for and olic all produced and researc ed e ar ard e a e coac in s aff as ell as online lesson plans and “flipped classroom� resources specificall for de a e Harvard Debate Council is an officially recognized student-run organization of Harvard College. The Harvard College name and/or shield are trademarks of the President and Fellows of Harvard College and are used by permission of Harvard University.

Make your speech worth being heard. Bradley’s Summer Forensics Institute can help your students claim the top spot at their next tournament.



REGISTER TODAY! bradley.edu/sfi

• Personalized Instruction • Championship Tradition • Tournament-Ready Results We give your students the life skills to clearly and concisely communicate their thoughts, for competition and beyond. During this two-week program, they will experience: • Individualized coaching customized to state and national rules • Daily presentations geared to all skill levels — novice to expert • One-on-one guidance to develop a competition-ready speech • Thoughtful final performance reviews by several staff coaches • Lifelong relationships with new friends and mentors

For more details and to register: bradley.edu/sfi

Find your spotlight in the sun! The #Nats18 Steering Committee is pictured below. We also want to thank each of our school-based hosts: Nicole Arnold (Cypress Bay High School), Katie Benitez (Everglades High School), Nancy Dean (Western High School), Diane Harrison (West Broward High School), Christine McMahon (Glades Middle School), and Jim Payne (Bonaventure Country Club).

Megan West, Chair

Dario Camara

Broward County Public Schools

Western High School

Alyssa Fiebrantz Cypress Bay High School

Chris Machado Monarch High School

Kate Hamm Ransom Everglades School

Janell McLeod McNichol Middle School

Bill Thompson NSU University School 22

Courtney Chipman Nova High School


Jennifer Kwasman St. Thomas Aquinas High School

Michael Norton Coral Springs High School

Jim Wakefield Fort Lauderdale High School

Cristina Cuevas Deerfield Beach High School

Susan Orlowski Fort Lauderdale High School

Justin Weaver Broward County Public Schools



he Florida Manatee District of the National Speech & Debate Association proudly welcomes you to the 2018 National Tournament, where we invite you to find your spotlight in the sun! In Broward County, we are very proud to have more than 12,000 students at more than 130 elementary, middle, and high schools involved in speech and debate on a daily basis. Our #DebateBroward/#Manateem family is excited for you to join us in sunny South Florida for one of our favorite weeks of the year. While nothing can compare to hoisting a championship trophy, we hope you also take the time to learn as much as possible, make new friends, and stop and smell the non-metaphorical palm trees. Fort Lauderdale is famous for our beautiful beaches, extensive food and entertainment options, and rich culture. Whether you are staying steps from the sand or out west by the Everglades, you’ll be surrounded by plenty of tropical fun.




If you arrive on Saturday or Sunday with downtime before competition begins, we suggest you take a short ride to Everglades Holiday Park (home of world-famous airboat rides and gator shows), take a ride up and/or down the Intracoastal Waterway on the Water Taxi (you can get off and back on at multiple restaurants—we love Shooters Waterfront), or catch an IMAX and meet the cutest otters you’ve ever seen at the Museum of Discovery and Science (MODS). Of course, there are 23 miles of white sandy beaches if you just want to relax, and places like Birch State Park will give you prime access. To stay fueled during the week, let us emphasize the importance of breakfast and dinner (equally awesome lunch will be served at all of our campuses). Our favorite local coffee spots include Sip Java, Warsaw Coffee, Colada, The Alchemist, and Ella Café. For some of the best donuts you will ever eat (they even have donuts stuffed with eggs and bacon), head down to The Back Shack in Dania Beach, only a few miles south of the Convention Center—or find one of the three Dandee Donut locations and order a Dandee Donut. For dinner after a long—and hopefully not too hot—day of competition, we suggest checking out anywhere on the Intracoastal (Coconuts is a local NSDA favorite), Las Olas (Big City Tavern is great for large groups), or Wilton Manors (Rosie’s is the location of choice for all of our District Committee meetings). If you need any other food suggestions, just ask a local host. We are happy to share other hidden gems that boast plenty of local favorites from conch fritters to Cuban sandwiches. We also want to make sure you don’t miss the Tuesday night NSDA Student Party, which will feature live music, an army of local food trucks, and plenty of fun for everyone. We hope to see you there and look forward to visiting with our friends from near and far across all of the venues during your stay. On behalf of our entire steering and host committee (almost all of whom are proud NSDA alumni), we know how much this week means to all of you. We hope to exceed your hosting expectations! We’ll give you the sunshine; you make it your own. Warm Hugs,


Megan West, Florida Manatee District Chair and 2018 National Tournament Host Committee Chair

Above » (1) Dandee Donut Factory • (2) Everglades Holiday Park • (3) Museum of Discovery and Science (MODS) • and (4) Shooters Waterfront. To explore more great dining options and other local attractions in the Fort Lauderdale area, visit www.speechanddebate.org /nationals. ROSTRUM | FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 23


National Speech & Debate Tournament JUNE 17-22, 2018 | Fort Lauderdale, Florida OVERVIEW OF HIGH SCHOOL TOURNAMENT LOGISTICS SUNDAY • JUNE 17 (Registration and Expo) This year, tournament registration and the expo will take place Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center in downtown Fort Lauderdale, Florida. For more Sunday schedule highlights, please refer to the section above.

MONDAY AND TUESDAY • JUNE 18-19 (Prelim Rounds/Early Elims/NSDA Student Party) Six venues will be used for preliminary competition Monday and Tuesday. All main event preliminary and early elimination competition on Monday and Tuesday will occur between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. High school Congressional Debate will be hosted at the Bonaventure Resort & Spa, which also serves as the host hotel for the tournament. Western HS will host preliminary rounds of Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Public Forum Debate, and Big Questions Debate. Everglades HS will host preliminary rounds of Policy Debate. West Broward HS will host World Schools Debate competition. Cypress Bay HS and Falcon Cove MS will host preliminary rounds of Humorous Interp, Dramatic Interp, Duo Interp, Program Oral Interp, Extemporaneous Speaking, Original Oratory, and Informative Speaking. The NSDA Student Party will take place Tuesday evening at America’s Backyard in downtown Fort Lauderdale. Coaches of students eliminated from main event competition Tuesday will re-register for Wednesday supplemental events at Revolution Live, adjacent to America’s Backyard, during the NSDA Student Party. Provisions for completing supplemental re-registration online will also be made available.

WEDNESDAY • JUNE 20 (Elim Rounds/Supplemental Events) Six venues will be used Wednesday. All competition will occur between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Students who qualify for elimination round 9 of all main speech and debate events (including World Schools and Big Questions Debate) will compete at Cypress Bay HS and Falcon Cove MS. High school Congressional Debate semifinals will be held at the Bonaventure Resort & Spa. Those students re-registered in Extemporaneous Debate will compete at Western HS. Those students re-registered for supplemental speech events will compete at Cypress Bay HS and Falcon Cove MS. International Supplemental Public Forum Debate also will occur at Cypress Bay HS and Falcon Cove MS. Note: Middle school competition begins Wednesday at Everglades HS and Glades MS.

THURSDAY • JUNE 21 (Elim Rounds/Supp-Cons Events/Interp Finals/Diamond Awards)

Online Registration Opens February 15 Note: All details are tentative and subject to change. Times are shown in ET.

Thursday morning, debate elimination rounds (including Big Questions Debate and International Supplemental Public Forum Debate) will continue at Cypress Bay HS and Falcon Cove MS. High school Congressional Debate will hold its final round sessions at the Bonaventure Resort & Spa. All supplemental speech and consolation events and Extemporaneous Debate will occur at Cypress Bay HS and Falcon Cove MS. Note: Middle school competition continues at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday at Everglades HS and Glades MS. Thursday afternoon and evening, attendees will enjoy the national final rounds of World Schools Debate, Program Oral Interp, Humorous Interp, Dramatic Interp, and Duo Interp, as well as the Donus D. Roberts Diamond Assembly, at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center.

FRIDAY • JUNE 22 (Supp-Cons/Main Event Finals and National Awards Assembly) The remaining main event final rounds (Informative Speaking, United States Extemp, International Extemp, Policy Debate, Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Public Forum Debate, and Original Oratory), as well as the Big Questions Debate, supplemental/consolation event, and middle school finals, will be held throughout the day on Friday at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center, culminating with the National Awards Assembly Friday evening.

The National Speech & Debate Association has appeared on the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) National Advisory List of Student Contests and Activities since the origination of the list. 24


Save money by staying within the National Tournament hotel block! Guarantee the best hotel rates and keep your tournament entry fees low by visiting the online booking system at www.speechanddebate.org/nationals. IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS WHEN SELECTING AND RESERVING HOTELS Please review before selecting lodging! NEW IN 2018: If your team stays within the National Tournament hotel block, you will receive a $25 discount off the current year’s main event entry fee per student. See our FAQ section at www.speechanddebate.org/nationals for more information. 1.

All schools should stay at one of the NSDA recommended hotels in downtown Fort Lauderdale or the surrounding areas. The lowest rates have been negotiated for our members. Please do not stay outside the block. The large volume of room sales within the block allows the NSDA to continue to negotiate the most affordable rate list. Properties that do not appear on this list are likely inconvenient for participation in the tournament, including lack of safety, amenities, and proximity to restaurants and provide no benefit to the overall cost of the tournament. Morning and afternoon traffic could add substantial time to your commute if you are located outside the block. In addition, hotels not on the list have no contractual obligation to the NSDA, and therefore, we cannot provide any level of reservation protection at these properties. Middle school teams are encouraged to stay in western corridor hotel properties as they are closest to the middle school competition venues.


All coaches must use the online booking system. Please do NOT call the hotels directly to book your hotel rooms. Larger teams requiring ten or more rooms, or those teams wishing to pay by check, may call the Greater Fort Lauderdale Housing Bureau. Details can be found on the online booking site. Up until May 1, 2018, coaches may update or cancel room reservations using the online booking site. After May 1, all room reservations within the block are subject to an automatic two-night, nonrefundable deposit per room at the time of booking.


All hotel properties in the National Tournament hotel block are within 20-35 minutes of the competition venues by interstate or surface streets. Be sure to check out the interactive Google map online to preview these sites. You can print all needed maps before ever leaving home! This year, tournament registration and the expo will take place Sunday at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center in downtown Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The final rounds and awards assembly will also take place at the Convention Center later in the week. The waterfront hotels located near the Convention Center will be ideal for attending registration, the NSDA Student Party, finals, and awards. Teams staying in any of the recommended properties will find these venues conveniently located.


The high school Congressional Debate headquarters is the Bonaventure Spa & Resort. It is recommended that high school teams with Congressional debaters stay at the Bonaventure host hotel or at one of the western corridor hotel properties to avoid substantial rush hour traffic issues. These hotels are an excellent choice in both price and feature.


It is recommended that all coaches visit the online booking system to determine which property fits the needs of their program. All hotels on the list are conveniently located to various aspects of the tournament. The waterfront properties are the most conveniently located hotels for access to tournament registration, the student posting party, final rounds, and the National Awards Assembly. Schools are encouraged to book early as hotel blocks will fill up quickly.


PLEASE LOOK AT A MAP! Before reserving hotel rooms, all coaches should consult a map of the Fort Lauderdale area (available at the link below) to get a better perspective on travel logistics. The key to a less stressful week is to consider following the above lodging suggestions provided by the national office.

Additional tournament information is available at www.speechanddebate.org/nationals. ROSTRUM | FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 25

TRANSPORTATION GUIDE • FORT LAUDERDALE NATIONALS Receive discounts off your flight when you book online with recommended carriers. Some restrictions may apply. Get started below!




Meeting Event Code:

Company ID:

Z Code and Agreement Code:




Hertz is the National Speech & Debate Association's Hertz Meeting Servicesofficial rental car company! ReservationsFor

more information, call (800) 654-2240 or visit www.hertz.com today. General Some restrictions Informationmay apply.

To reserve special meeting rates, please include your CV# when making reservations.

Hertz Meeting Services National Speech & Debate Tournament

National Speech Debate Tournament Ft. & Lauderdale, FL June 17-22, 2018 Fort Lauderdale, Florida CV#053L0001 National Speech & Debate Tournament June 17-22, 2018 At the of reservation, meeting rates will be • time 1-800-654-2240 Ft. Lauderdale, FL automatically compared to other Hertz rates and • 1-405-749-4434 June 17-22, 2018 the•best rate will apply. www.hertz.com Rates available from all Florida locations for CV#053L0001

• 1-800-654-2240 Reservations

• 1-405-749-4434 To reserve special meeting rates, please include • making www.hertz.com your CV# when reservations.

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Covers lock-outs and lost key Protects• you from unexpected service costs related • Flat tiresoccurrences. and tire mounting are covered to non-mechanical Daily rental fee • Running out of gas/fuel delivery applies. • Travel interruption reimbursement up to $1,000 • Covers lock-outs and lost key • Flat tires and tire mounting are covered • Running out of gas/fuel delivery • Travel interruption reimbursement up to $1,000

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Meeting rates include unlimited mileage and are subject to availability. Advance reservations are recommended, blackout dates may apply. Government surcharges, taxes, tax reimbursement, General Information airport related fees, vehiclemileage licensing fees Meeting rates include unlimited and areand optional items, such as refueling or additional subject to availability. Advance reservations are driver fees,blackout are extra. Minimum rentalGovage is 20 recommended, dates may apply. (agesurcharges, differential charge for reimbursement, 20-24 applies). ernment taxes, tax Standard rentalvehicle conditions and qualifications apairport related fees, licensing fees and ply. items, Vehicles can returned most Hertz locaoptional such asbe refueling ortoadditional Florida. drivertions fees,within are extra. Minimum rental age is 20 the continental and Canada weekend (age In differential chargeU.S. for 20-24 applies). rentals are conditions available for pickup between apnoon Standard rental and qualifications ply. Vehicles benoon returned to most Hertz be locaThursdaycan and Sunday and must retions turned within Florida. no later than Monday at 11:59 p.m. In theThursday continental U.S. and Canada weekend pick-up requires a minimum three-day rentals are available for pickup between noon twokeep. Friday pick-up requires a minimum Thursday and noon Sunday and be reday keep, and Saturday andmust Sunday pick-up returned no later than Monday at 11:59rentals p.m. are from quire a one-day keep. Weekly Thursday a minimum five topick-up seven requires days. Extra day ratethree-day for Weekly keep.rentals Fridaywill pick-up a minimum be 1/5requires of the Weekly Rate.twoday keep, and Saturday and Sunday pick-up require a one-day keep. Weekly rentals are from five to seven days. Extra day rate for Weekly rentals will be 1/5 of the Weekly Rate.

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Additional tournament information is available at www.speechanddebate.org/nationals. 26



Middle School Overview | JUNE 19-22, 2018 Tentative Schedule TUESDAY • JUNE 19 Middle school registration will be held from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Revolution Live adjacent to America’s Backyard in downtown Fort Lauderdale. WEDNESDAY • JUNE 20 Middle school competition begins Wednesday at Everglades HS and Glades MS. Rounds begin at 8:00 a.m. and last until 6:00 p.m. Time has been built in for lunch. THURSDAY • JUNE 21 Middle school competition continues Thursday at Everglades HS and Glades MS. Rounds begin at 8:00 a.m. and last until 7:45 p.m. Time has been built in for lunch. FRIDAY • JUNE 22 Beginning at 8:00 a.m., final rounds of Speech, Congress, and World Schools Debate, as well as semifinal and final rounds of Policy, Lincoln-Douglas, and Public Forum, will be held at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center. The middle school awards assembly will commence at 4:00 p.m. followed by the high school awards assembly at 6:30 p.m., where the middle school circle of champions will be recognized on the high school stage!

Important Middle School Dates • Coaches can register online at MSNats.tabroom.com starting February 15. • Entries are due April 24. All entries will be placed on a waitlist. Entries will be taken off the waitlist once payment has been received (space permitted, up to four). Additional entries will remain on the waitlist until the payment deadline of May 12. Entries will be taken off the waitlist based upon the payment date and not the registration date. • Congressional Debate legislation is due April 24. • Title, author, and ISBN information for Interpretation events must be posted on the registration website by May 1. • Media release forms, signed by each student’s parent/ guardian, must be submitted by May 12. • All fees, including judge bond, must be received in the national office by May 12. • A late fee of $200 will be assessed for fees and forms received after May 12. A school risks forfeiting participation if fees and media release forms are not received by May 19.

Other Details • Coaches are asked to carefully review all information on the tournament website. • Please note that each school is limited to four (4) entries per event. A team may place an additional four entries in the system to try to secure additional spots. Students will be moved off of the waitlist on a rolling basis after payment has been received. Any slots beyond the four will not be available until after the payment deadline of May 12. • Middle schools are required to bring judges for each division in which they have students (Policy, LD, or PF, Speech, Congress, and World Schools) as a condition for registering.

Review Before Selecting Lodging Middle school coaches should read all information relative to lodging on page 25. Middle school teams are encouraged to stay in western corridor hotel properties as they are closest to the middle school competition venues. NEW in 2018: If your team stays within the National Tournament hotel block, you will save an additional $25 entry fee per student. See our FAQ section at www.speechanddebate.org/nationals for more information.

Membership Notice The Board of Directors affirms the creation, support, and development of speech and debate programs at the middle and secondary levels through accredited public and private schools. All members of the National Speech & Debate Association must be schoolbased. For any club or organization that does not currently have a school-based membership, the NSDA is eager to work with you to create school-based speech and debate teams. Students who are currently members through their area non-school-based clubs and organizations may request to have their memberships transferred to their accredited public and private schools. Homeschools and virtual schools that are recognized by the state in which those schools compete may join the National Speech & Debate Association.

World Schools Debate Pilot World Schools Debate is being piloted at the 2018 Middle School National Tournament. All judges must attend the on-site judge training. The only exception that will be made is for high school students who competed in elimination rounds on Wednesday morning at the National Tournament and, as a result, could not attend training.

Additional tournament information is available at www.speechanddebate.org/nationals. ROSTRUM | FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 27


STO R E .S P E E CH A N DD E BATE .ORG * Pick up shirts in Fort Lauderdale starting Sunday, June 17. Limited quantities available during the National Tournament. Pre-ordering is recommended to ensure we have your size selection!


JO I N U S !

• FO O D • M U S IC • FUN • RE S U LTS AN D M OR E !

Supplemental Re-registration National Tournament Expo Speech & Debate Store Middle School Registration

TUESDAY, JUNE 19 | 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. America’s Backyard & Revolution Live Located at 100 SW 3rd Ave, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312


NATIONALS ADVICE Attending our tournament for the first time? You’ve got this! by Annie Reisener


ou’re not alone if you’re attending Nationals for the first time. Our community of seasoned coaches are here to help! We asked members who joined us for the 2017 National Tournament to shed some light on what to expect as a first-time attendee. Here’s what they said.

BEFORE COMPETITION BEGINS “Bring a health/entertainment bag every competition day. Health bag contains throat candies, small foods to hold you over, and extra water. Entertainment bag has a power bank, maybe cards, or anything to keep people mentally awake.” “Bring sturdy walking shoes and a jacket; dress in layers; pack snacks for yourself and your students.”

so you have a very clear picture of your own schedule within the larger, complex week that is the tournament.” “Drive from your hotel to the tournament sites on Saturday or Sunday so that Monday morning is stress free. Do a Google map search for the time and day of the week you will be driving in the morning to know about how much time it will take to get from your hotel to the site(s) and site to site so you know how much time to plan.” “Be prepared to have students perform in rooms that are not typically used in tournaments. Practice your interps in the smallest space possible to simulate what it could be like so your students are prepared. Aim for a consistent performance in all rounds and make sure your speech and debate entries can appeal to as many judges as possible.”

“Utilize the App! It is wonderful.” In May, National Tournament attendees can download the Nats18 Guidebook App to see schedules, results, and receive updates and announcements during the tournament. “Be certain to register your qualifier(s) for supplemental and consolation events. It’s a great way to build skills!” “READ THE BOOK! There is a lot of information you don’t even know you need.” Attendees will receive copies of the 2018 National Tournament Book at registration on Sunday. The book includes all schedules, as well as information about awards, judge bonds, lost and found, tournament officials, and so much more. “Make sure you’re organized. Read through the schedule in advance and take your own notes on the schedule,

DURING THE TOURNAMENT “Don’t be afraid to ask questions. The National Tournament is a great time, but it can be overwhelming your first time. Ask questions about procedures, etc.” “Take care of yourself—bring a water bottle, walk around during breaks, get sleep when you can, buy some fresh fruit and healthy snacks to keep yourself going during long days.” “Get to finals super early to make sure you get a good seat!” “It’s a marathon, but it goes quickly. Make use of the last two days—watch as many finals as possible. Don’t ignore the supplemental and consolation events.”

“Watch all the finals! Take notes. Enjoy the ride. It was our first year as an NSDA team and we ended up with a student who finished tenth overall—don’t ever doubt yourself! You may be new, or small, or overwhelmed, but this is a place where everyone’s voice matters!”

MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR EXPERIENCE “Make some time to sightsee and have fun with your students!” Check out page 23 for suggestions from our Local Hosts! “Go to the new coach reception and try to go to any trainings you can.”

SAVE THE DATE to join the NSDA Board of Directors and senior staff at the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention Center on Sunday, June 17, at 10:00 a.m. for the First Time at Nationals Coach Reception, sponsored by the generous contributions of the NSDA staff, their friends, and their families. You will have an opportunity to ask questions, become oriented to the tournament in a more personal manner, and enjoy the company of other new coaches. “Just relax and get to know everyone you meet! It’s a chance to hear some of the most unique stories.” “Make new friends, they’ll come in handy in the future, especially if they’re from your state or district.” “Soak in every single moment. It’s going to be one of the best experiences of your entire life.” Annie Reisener serves as Operations Specialist for the NSDA.



Curriculum Corner Check out these practical ideas for speech and debate teachers to use in the classroom.

Critical Classroom Converations In August of 2017, the National Center for Education Statistics in partnership with the U.S. Department of Education reported that, during the 2015-2016 school year, about 80% of all public school teachers were non-Hispanic White. As a result, many educators are charged with teaching students from racial backgrounds other than their own. Educators have the responsibility to seek information that will help them better serve their students. So often diversity celebration focuses on heroes and holidays, but authentic conversations can be inspired by observations like Black History Month. The following resources can help begin informing some of the conversations that may arise at any time of the year.

Five Things Not to Do During Black History Month

Dear White Teacher by Chrysanthius Lanthan

https://www.rethinkingschools.org /articles/dear-whiteteacher • Lanthan, a teacher who identifies “as a Black, female, no-nonsense middle school teacher,” speaks to White teachers offering guidance, suggestions, and (for some) much-deserved criticism. She discusses classroom management, relationships with the parents of students of color, and White teachers’ fear of being called racist.

Supporting Black LGBTQ Students https://www.glsen.org /article/supporting-black-lgbtqstudents • GLSEN, whose mission is “that every member of every school community is valued and respected regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression” offers resources for teachers looking to incorporate Black LGBTQ identities into their curriculum. Of particular note is the Icons series that features nine Black heroes of the LGBTQ community.

Tough Conversations: A Primer for Discussing Race and Racism in the Classroom by Tommy J. Curry, Ph.D., Douglas Dennis, and Aaron Timmons

by Zaretta Hammond

https://www.speechanddebate.org /rostrum

https://www.tolerance.org /magazine/five-things-notto-do-during-black-history-month

• First published in the Summer 2015 issue of Rostrum (see pages 14-19), this article offers educators five things to consider before guiding classroom discussions on topics like race and racism. Additionally, Curry, Dennis, and Timmons provide a sample set of communityclassroom norms for addressing controversial topics and a bibliography for further reading.

• To contribute to the significance of the annual commemoration of Black History Month, Teaching Tolerance Magazine author Zaretta Hammond makes five suggestions of what educators should NOT do.

Have an idea for our next Curriculum Corner? Email lauren.mccool@speechanddebate.org 30


Substitute-Friendly Lesson Plans It seems as if at least once a semester there is a day when, despite your best efforts, you’re not able to be in class. Perhaps it’s a tournament out of state that requires you to travel, or it may be a stomach bug keeping you at home. Regardless of the reason you need them, low-prep sub plans are hard to find! As part of this month’s Curriculum Corner, we offer free, downloadable, substitute-friendly lesson plans for speech and debate classes.

SPEECH LESSON PLANS • Interp Option: Students will use passages from children’s stories to practice characterization, voices/accents, and improvised blocking. Then, individually or in pairs, students will practice cutting the story into a piece to perform for the class. • Public Speaking Option: Students will give mini impromptu speeches using either the provided prompts or prompts written/created by their classmates. Each student will speak several times on both serious and silly topics.

DEBATE LESSON PLANS • Using free, downloadable SPAR cards, students will hold mini extemporaneous debates. Using little to no evidence, students will debate both serious and silly topics while other students serve as judges. PARTICIPATE LEARNING COMMUNITY


DOWNLOAD THESE LESSON PLANS AND MORE USING CONNECT There are several ways to access CONNECT, our Participate Learning Community. First, you can visit www.NSDAConnect.org to visit the CONNECT portal. You’ll also find the link and a user guide on the NSDA website under “Programs” and then “Professional Development.” Once you’ve created an account, you can access all things CONNECT. You can browse the courses offered, begin creating and reviewing collections, and in general, begin to grow further connected to like-minded educators. If you have a substitute-friendly lesson plan that you’re willing to share, please email Lauren McCool at lauren.mccool@speechanddebate.org and we’ll help you get it posted on CONNECT. Compiled by Lauren McCool, Education and Recognition Coordinator for the National Speech & Debate Association

Help us find the next COACH OF THE YEAR & PRINCIPAL OF THE YEAR Each year, the National Speech & Debate Association recognizes one middle school coach and one high school coach who best reflect outstanding leadership and commitment to speech and debate activities.

We also honor one principal at both the middle and high school level who have provided high-quality opportunities for students in speech and debate programming as well as demonstrated exemplary contributions to the profession.


www.speechanddebate.org/coach-recognition www.speechanddebate.org/school-recognition

Nominations must be received by APRIL 6, 2018, to be considered for the 2018 awards. ROSTRUM | FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 31


Res 8urce Roundup Black History Month: Poster Series, Annotated Bibliography, and More

SPARK LEADERS More than 40 members of the speech and debate community are highlighted in our special poster series available for download this month! Jarrius Adams Andrea Ambam Byron Arthur Jaylon Bolden E. Steve Bolden II Khaatim Boyd Treya Brown Courtney Janine Brunson Daryl Burch Brittney Cooper Lyric Davis Nefertiti Dukes Dr. Mike Edmonds Cornelia Fraser Dr. Thomas F. Freeman Nick Gilyard Austin Groves Rasha Harvey Andre P. Hylton Ryan James Korey Johnson Renita Johnson

Norisha Kirts Dr. Tommie Lindsey, Jr. Chad Meadows Devane Murphy Nicole Nave Brent O’Connor Walter Paul Drake Pough Kristen Pride James Roland Kofi Sam Kiyah Sanders Aaron Timmons Sylvester Turner Cameron Ward Melvin Washington Sarah Carthen Watson Cory Williams Darius Wilson Jacci Young Jamaka Young-Davis

As part of our ongoing celebration of Black History Month, we have pursued recommendations from the African American/Black Coaches’ Caucus to increase the visibility of Black students and alumni who have succeeded in speech and debate. Many of you may be familiar with famous Black alumni like media proprietor and talk show host Oprah Winfrey or actor and comedian Kenan Thompson of Saturday Night Live fame— but there are scores of other alums who have gone on to do great things and lead successful careers. In an effort to share the stories of these alumni with our members, the NSDA has created a set of Spark Leaders posters featuring successful Black alumni, coaches, and speech and debate community members. It is our hope that the success of these featured alumni and coaches will inspire students to join our activity and succeed in speech and debate. In partnership with Wiley

College, we are proud to offer an initial annotated bibliography of works from nearly 100 Black playwrights and authors to inspire your next interpretation cutting or classroom discussion. Additionally, we have provided Congress legislation, Extemp practice questions, and various Impromptu prompts focused on Black History Month themes to help spark critical thinking and relevant conversations during the month of February and beyond. The poster series and other resources are free to download from www.speechanddebate.org/ black-history-month and will be shared on social media throughout the month. We also welcome your submissions! Do you have a resource that celebrates Black History Month or know an alum who deserves another moment in the speech and debate spotlight? Please email annie.reisener@ speechanddebate.org.


www.speechanddebate.org/black-history-month 32







Tips for Making

March 2

a Success in 2018!


ational Speech and Debate Education Day is just a few short weeks away. There is still plenty of time to get involved at your school! March 2 is a special day for all of us in the speech and debate community. It’s a day dedicated to celebrating speech and debate educators, inspiring students, and transforming tomorrow. Promoting National Speech and Debate Education Day at your school is not only a great way to honor your students and their dedication to speech and debate, but it’s also a unique opportunity to further promote our activity and the vast skill set it provides students. The National Speech & Debate Association is leading a bipartisan effort with members of the United States Congress to pass a national resolution declaring March 2 as National Speech and Debate Education Day. In addition, we are collaborating with leaders in all 50 states to pass




Ways to celebrate National Speech and Debate Education Day

SPEECH • Sign up to participate online at



www.SpeechandDebateDay.org. Download the toolkit at www.SpeechandDebateDay.org. Plan an event to celebrate speech and debate at your school. Find various ways to promote National Speech and Debate Education Day in your school, such as posters, announcements, and newsletters. Send thank you grams to teachers or administrators by visiting www.SpeechandDebateDay.org. Share your stories on social media using the hashtag #SpeechandDebateDay. Share pictures, videos, and details of your celebration with us! (Email social@speechanddebate.org and tag @speechanddebate on social media. See additional ideas below.)


• • •

• •

On March 2, share your story on social media! N AT ION A L

SPEECH 1) Tell us your story DEBATE



state and municipal resolutions. These official designations not only raise awareness about the value of speech and debate activities, but also increase the opportunity for local and national media coverage. Our team is working diligently to secure as much media attention about speech and debate as possible, and would love to help you promote your team’s efforts to local media outlets! There are many ways you can recognize March 2 in your school and community. You decide the level of effort you would like to put into the day. We have developed a team toolkit with dozens of resources to assist in promoting and celebrating the day. These items are available online at www.SpeechandDebateDay.org. From classroom activities to marketing materials, posters, press release templates, letters to administrators, and more, there are many ways you can make March 2 a special day at your school. One of the easiest and most important ways you can celebrate is sharing your story on social media. You make this activity special. We want to hear from you! On March 2, we want you to share why you love speech and debate. Tell us how speech and debate has impacted your life, what you have gained from participating in the activity, and what makes speech and debate great. Sharing your stories is just one way to highlight the value of our activity with people outside of the speech and debate community. National Speech and Debate Education Day is an outstanding way to celebrate and promote our activity. It’s an opportunity to honor the students who dedicate their time, energy, and passion to speech and debate. It’s a day to recognize teachers and coaches for teaching these lifechanging skills to young people. It’s a great time to say thank you to our supporters and advocates, and to share the benefits of this activity with your community, your state, and the rest of the country. We can’t wait to celebrate YOU on March 2!

• How has speech and debate impacted your life? • What skills have you gained by participating in speech and debate? • Why is speech and debate the best activity? Post pictures • Share pictures from your school or community celebrations • Post photos of your team • Post a photo wearing your favorite tournament outfit! Tag us @speechanddebate • Facebook • Twitter • Instagram Use #SpeechandDebateDay in all posts Follow us on social media (and be sure to share our posts before, during, or after March 2!) Email your photos to social@speechanddebate.org




4) 5)


Written by Shelby Young, Communications Specialist for the NSDA

RESOURCES FOR YOU To help promote National Speech and Debate Education Day, download various resources provided for you at: www.SpeechandDebateDay.org LOGOS:













[School Name] Celebrates National Speech and Debate Education Day!


City, State (Month Day, 2018) – [School Name/Speech and Debate Team] is proud to celebrate National Speech and Debate Education Day on March 2, 2018.

A resolution designating March 2, 2018, as “National Speech and Debate Education Day”. Whereas it is essential for youth to learn and practice the art of communicating, with and apart from technology; Whereas speech and debate education offers students myriad forms of public speaking through which to develop their talents and exercise their unique voice and character; Whereas speech and debate gives students the 21st century skills of communication, critical thinking, creativity, and collaboration; Whereas important ideas, texts, and philosophies have the opportunity to flourish when they have been analyzed critically and communicated effectively; Whereas personal, professional, and civic interactions are enhanced by their participants’ abilities to listen, concur, question, and even dissent with reason and compassion; Whereas students who participate in speech and debate have chosen a challenging activity that requires regular practice, dedication, and hard work; Whereas teachers and coaches of speech and debate devote in-school, after-school, and weekend hours to equip students with life-changing skills and opportunities; Whereas National Speech and Debate Education Day emphasizes the lifelong impact of providing citizens with the confidence and preparation to both discern and share their views; Whereas National Speech and Debate Education Day acknowledges that most achievements, celebrations, commemorations, and pivotal moments in modern history begin, end, or are crystallized with public address; Whereas National Speech and Debate Education Day recognizes that learning to research, construct, and present an argument is integral to personal advocacy, social movements, and the making of public policy; Whereas the National Speech & Debate Association, in conjunction with national and local partners, honors and celebrates the importance of speech and debate through National Speech and Debate Education Day; and Whereas National Speech and Debate Education Day emphasizes the importance of speech and debate instruction and its integration across grade levels and disciplines: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate— (1) designates March 2, 2018, as ‘National Speech and Debate Education Day’; (2) strongly affirms the purposes of National Speech and Debate Education Day; and (3) encourages educational institutions, businesses, community and civic associations, and all citizens to celebrate and promote National Speech and Debate Education Day.




#S peec h andDeb ateDay

National Speech and Debate Education Day was created by the National Speech & Debate Association (NSDA) to recognize and celebrate the positive impact of speech and debate activities on students, schools, and communities. The NSDA is the largest interscholastic organization servicing middle school, high school, and collegiate students in the United States. On March 2, 2018, there will be more than 1.5 million speech and debate alumni celebrating speech and debate education nationwide. “Speech and debate changes lives,” said J. Scott Wunn, Executive Director of the National Speech & Debate Association. “From increased attendance to higher test scores and a rise in college acceptance, speech and debate prepares young people for college, the work force, and beyond.” [School Name/Speech and Debate Team] will celebrate this life changing activity by [insert details on event, ways your celebrating, etc.]. [Insert quote from coach/teacher/educator/administrator about why it’s important to celebrate at your school.] From local celebrations, to the halls of Congress in Washington, D.C., the educational value of speech and debate will be celebrated near and far on March 2, 2018. In addition to special events and programs, thousands will share personal stories of how speech and debate changed their life on social media using the hashtag #SpeechandDebateDay. [Insert quote/testimonial from local student on how this activity changed their life.] [Include additional information about upcoming events, tournaments, etc.] For more information on National Speech and Debate Education Day, visit www.SpeechandDebateDay.org. To learn more about joining the National Speech & Debate Association, visit www.speechanddebate.org. About the National Speech & Debate Association The National Speech & Debate Association is the largest interscholastic speech and debate organization serving middle school, high school, and collegiate students in the United States. The Association provides competitive speech and debate activities, high-quality resources, comprehensive training, scholarship opportunities, and advanced recognition to more than 150,000 students and coaches every year. For 90 years, the National Speech & Debate Association has empowered more than 1.5 million members to become engaged citizens, skilled professionals, and honorable leaders in our society. For more information, visit www.speechanddebate.org. ### MEDIA CONTACT: Shelby Young, National Speech & Debate Association, shelby.young@speechanddebate.org, (920) 748-6206 [Insert Your Contact Information]


Download these items and more resources from: www.SpeechandDebateDay.org




National Speech and Debate Education Day 2018 Team Toolkit March 2, 2018 | www.SpeechandDebateDay.org

July 7 - 15, 2018 July 7 - 15, 2018

New WKU team members Rickey Williams, Sabas Del Toro, Ashlyn Jones, Isaac Keller, Symone Whalin, Corey Newsome, Emma Warnecke, Zach Bernat, Kiyah Sanders, Quest Broussard, Tayland Ratliff, D.J. Oropeza, Nas Ali, and Diego Martinez New WKU team members Rickey Williams, Sabas Del Toro, Ashlyn Jones, Isaac Keller, Symone Whalin, Corey Newsome, Emma Warnecke, Zach Bernat, Kiyah Sanders, Quest Broussard, Tayland Ratliff, D.J. Oropeza, Nas Ali, and Diego Martinez

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For more information, contact Ganer Newman - ganer.newman@wku.edu ForForensics; more information, contact Ganer - ganer.newman@wku.edu WKU 1906 College Heights Blvd.Newman #51084; Bowling Green, KY 42101-1084 WKU Forensics; 1906 College Heights Blvd. @wkuforensics #51084; Bowling|Green, KY 42101-1084 www.wkuforensics.com | Twitter: 270-745-6340 www.wkuforensics.com | Twitter: @wkuforensics | 270-745-6340

National Caliber Staff In a Beautiful Campus Atmosphere

Don’t miss the legendary July 4th Celebration

44th Annual

Samford University S u n d a y, J u n e 2 4 - S a t u r d a y, J u l y 7 , 2 0 1 8 Why choose Samford Debate Institute?


Samford is committed to maintaining low prices. Limited financial aid is available. Please apply by June 1st, 2018.

Residents (Policy & LD)

$1,500.00 (including $50.00 deposit)

Commuters (Policy & LD)

$1,200.00 (including $50.00 deposit)

Public Forum Division

Dates: Sunday, June 24th - Saturday, June 30th

Residents for Public Forum

$750.00 (including $50.00 deposit)

Commuters for Public Forum $550.00 (including $50.00 deposit)


Ensuring Access to Speech and Debate for Students with Disabilities: Legal Basics by Thomas A. Mayes and Perry A. Zirkel


wo important federal laws—the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (“Section 504”)—protect students with disabilities from discrimination in education, as well as requiring supports and program modifications when necessary to participate in programs or services offered by covered entities. Although most attention has focused on interscholastic athletics (Sullivan, Lantz, & Zirkel, 2000), their coverage includes co-curricular and extracurricular speech and debate programs. We explain these legal basics and then apply them to situations that speech and debate professionals may confront.

What Entities Are Covered by the ADA and Section 504? Title II of the ADA prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities by state and local governments, such as school districts. Title III prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities by privately owned places of public accommodation, including schools; however, Title III

does not cover “religious organizations or entities controlled by religious organizations, including places of worship” (42 U.S.C. § 12187). Even though Title III of the ADA does not cover a faith-based private entity, a covered entity may violate the ADA by providing assistance to, or partnering with, that non-covered private entity (Sullivan, Lantz, & Zirkel, 2000). Section 504 prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities by entities receiving federal financial assistance. Section 504’s definition of “federal financial assistance” is broader than cash assistance, and includes loans and in-kind assistance, as well as indirect assistance (34 C.F.R. § 104.4(b)), and includes private schools that participate in federal programs such as special education under the IDEA and remedial education under Title I (Zirkel, 2009).

Which Students Are Covered Under Section 504 and the ADA? Both Section 504 and the ADA contain the identical definition of disability—(1) a physical or mental impairment that (2) substantially limits the person (3) in a major life activity (Zirke1, 2009). Note


under this standard that a diagnosis, standing alone, does not create 504/ADA coverage. Instead, that impairment must cause a substantial limitation on a major life activity (Holler & Zirkel, 2008). For example, if a child with a dyslexia diagnosis has evidence of only a minor limitation in any major life activity, the child is not 504/ADA covered (Holler & Zirkel, 2008; Zirkel, 2009). The law’s list of major life activities is broad, non-exhaustive, and not limited to academic performance (Holler & Zirkel, 2008). A knowledgeable team, not a single person, such as a debate coach or tournament director, must make the determination of whether a student meets this three-part definition (34 C.F.R. § 104.35(c)(3)). The ADA amendments of 2008 provided interpretive standards for determining substantial limitation. First, a team determines a child’s eligibility under the ADA and Section 504 without regard to medication or mitigating measures (Zirkel, 2009). For example, for a child who has hearing loss, that child’s team determines eligibility without her hearing aids, not with her hearing aids. Similarly, a team determines eligibility for a child with ADHD without the effect of any

We explain the legal basics of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and then apply them to situations that speech and debate professionals may confront. ROSTRUM | FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 39

prescription medication a child may be taking. The only exception to this “no mitigating measures” rule is ordinary contacts or eyeglasses. Second, the ADA and Section 504 cover impairments that are episodic or in remission if the condition is substantially limiting in its active phase (Zirkel, 2009). Third, the law covers temporary impairments if the temporary impairment results in substantial limitations of a major life activity (Office for Civil Rights [OCR], 2015). As a general rule, the length of time for a temporary impairment is six months but the requisite duration will depend on the individual circumstances (OCR, 2015). The ADA and Section 504 also protect individuals who are regarded as having an impairment or who have a record of such an impairment (Holler & Zirkel, 2008). People who are covered under the “regarded as” or “record of” prongs do not have a current disability; however, they are protected from discrimination based on disabilities they once had or disabilities people imagine them to have. However, these two alternative prongs protect the individual against exclusion rather than entitling them to services or accommodations.

What Is Included in the Duty Not to Discriminate? Section 504 and the ADA are antidiscrimination laws (Holler & Zirkel, 2008; OCR, 2015). These laws prohibit decision-making based on “generalizations or stereotypes” and must be individualized (OCR, 2013, p. 5). These laws also require covered entities afford children with disabilities an “equal opportunity” to participate in a covered entity’s programs or services (34 C.F.R. § 104.37). The duty not to discriminate includes the following, according to the United States Department of Education’s OCR (2013, pp. 3-4, quoting and paraphrasing 34 C.F.R. § 104.4(b)(1)(i)-(iv), (vii), (2), (3)): • “denying a qualified student with a disability the opportunity to participate in or benefit from an aid, benefit, or service;



• affording a qualified student with a disability an opportunity to participate in or benefit from an aid, benefit, or service that is not equal to that afforded others; • providing a qualified student with a disability with an aid, benefit, or service that is not as effective as that provided to others and does not afford that student with an equal opportunity to obtain the same result, gain the same benefit, or reach the same level of achievement in the most integrated setting appropriate to the student’s needs; • providing different or separate aid, benefits, or services to students with disabilities or to any class of students with disabilities unless such action is necessary to provide a qualified student with a disability with aid, benefits, or services that are as effective as those provided to others; and • otherwise limiting a qualified individual with a disability in the enjoyment of any right, privilege, advantage, or opportunity enjoyed by others receiving an aid, benefit, or service.” This discrimination prohibition includes the duty not to partner with or provide “significant assistance to any association, organization, club, league, or other third party that discriminates on the basis of disability” (OCR, 2013, p. 5). For that reason, the United States Department of Justice warned that a public school’s debate team competing at a tournament in an inaccessible building at a private religious high school “may not be meeting its obligation of program access” (Letter to Bereuter, 1993). In a related matter, statewide or regional high school activity associations or leagues have uniformly been held to be subject to the ADA and Section 504 (OCR, 2013; Sullivan, Lantz, & Zirkel, 2000). The obligation to provide an equal opportunity for participation may require extracurricular programs or activities “to make reasonable modifications to … policies, practices or procedures…,” unless it can be

demonstrated “that the requested modification would constitute a fundamental alteration of the nature of the extracurricular … activity” (OCR, 2013, p. 7). The obligation also may require a covered entity to provide “supplementary aids and services,” unless those would fundamentally alter the program or activity (OCR, 2015; OCR, 2013, p. 6). If those supports are necessary, the child’s team includes them in the child’s plan (Sullivan, Lantz, & Zirkel, 2000). In determining whether a supplementary aid or service or a modification constitutes a fundamental alteration, the OCR (2013) uses the following framework: 1) Is the modification or service necessary for an equal opportunity for participation (OCR, 2013)? 2) If so, does the modification or service “fundamentally alter” the activity? A fundamental alteration occurs under either of these circumstances: • It “alters such an essential aspect of the activity or game that it would be unacceptable even if it affected all competitors equally (such as adding an extra base in baseball)” or • Even though having “only a peripheral impact on the activity or game itself,” it “might nevertheless give a particular player with a disability an unfair advantage over others and, for that reason, fundamentally alter the nature of the competition.” (OCR, 2013, p. 7). 3) If the modification or service is a fundamental alteration, has the school determined “whether other modifications might be available that would permit the student’s participation” (OCR, 2013, p. 7)? The purpose of the law is to level the playing field and account for the limitations because of the child’s disability, not to give the child a competitive advantage over other children (OCR, 2013). For that reason, an entity may require students, with or without supplementary services

or modifications, to attain a certain “level of skill or ability in order for that student to participate in a selective or competitive program or activity, so long as the selection or competition criteria are not discriminatory” (OCR, 2013, p. 3). The law also provides for coaches’ decisions about who will compete and in what event, so long as those coaches’ decisions are not discriminatory and “must be based on the same criteria the coach uses for all other” competitors (OCR, 2013, at 6). The process of determining whether modifications or supports amount to a fundamental alteration requires knowing the fundamental nature of the activity. If there is a dispute about what is an essential element of a speech or debate event, it is difficult to make a principled application of the first subprong of the “fundamental alteration” prong above. If there is no agreement about what is “essential” to the event, then the analysis should continue to whether there is a competitive advantage gained by the modification or support. If a child with a disability is unable to participate in an activity even with modifications and supports, the law does not require that covered entities create a parallel or separate activity (Letter to Negrón, 2013). However, the United States Department of Education encourages schools to consider doing so (Letter to Negrón, 2013; OCR, 2013). If a school district created an alternate activity for children with disabilities who could not access the standard activity, it would be disability-based discrimination to require children with disabilities to participate in the alternate activity (OCR, 2013). Two more topics deserve attention: (1) bullying and harassment and (2) discipline of students with disabilities. If a child with a disability experiences harassment because of his disability or a denial of a free appropriate public education because of bullying and harassment, the school “must take prompt and effective steps reasonably calculated to end the bullying, eliminate the hostile environment, prevent it from

recurring, and, as appropriate, remedy its effects” (OCR, 2014). As to discipline, as a general rule, a covered entity is not to remove a child with a disability, from the child’s current educational placement because of behavior that is a manifestation of her disability (S-1 v. Turlington, 1981). Although the law covers only disciplinary removals that constitute changes in placement (e.g., suspensions or expulsions of more than 10 days in length), it may be prudent to consider whether the child’s disability caused the misconduct before removing or suspending him from the team or competition. That being said, if the disability-caused misconduct is incompatible with the activity, the child is excludable under the “fundamental alteration” prong of Section 504 and the ADA.

“Following the principles set forth in this article will help schools comply with Section 504 and the ADA. More importantly, however, schools will follow a key portion of the NSDA’s Code of Honor . . . Respect.” Children who are covered under the “regarded as” or “record of” prongs are protected from discrimination but are not entitled to modifications or supports (Holler & Zirkel, 2008). This is because they have no present and actual need for different treatment. Finally, parents who disagree with identification decisions, evaluation decisions, or educational placement decisions have procedural safeguards (Weber, 2012). This includes the right to an impartial hearing (34 C.F.R. § 104.37) and the right to use the covered entity’s required grievance procedure (34 C.F.R. § 104.7(b)).

Hypotheticals: What Do You Do in the Following Situations? Using this information, consider the following ten hypothetical situations (assume, unless otherwise stated, that you are the team’s coach). We provide our proposed responses in light of the authorities discussed above.

Hypothetical One: You are a tournament director and have received a request for accommodations from an Extemporaneous Speaking competitor’s coach. The competitor is 504-covered because of PTSD: the child’s traumatic event occurred in the Sudanese civil war. The coach asks that any Extemp question relating to war crimes or current armed conflict in Africa be removed when the child draws her questions. The request does not appear to be a change in the essential nature of Extemporaneous Speaking. The competitor will still draw three questions and answer one; the competitor has no competitive advantage over other speakers, who also draw three and answer one.

Hypothetical Two: A Humorous Interpretation competitor wants to attend an overnight trip. The competitor’s plan calls for paraeducator assistance because of physical health needs. You usually arrange team travel, which is paid for by the team’s parent booster club. The booster club tells the student’s parents that a parent must travel with the child because the booster club cannot pay for the paraeducator to travel to the overnight tournament. This demand is prohibited discrimination. The booster club is an agent of the school. The school cannot partner with the booster club to impermissibly shift costs for the school’s obligations under Section 504 and the ADA to the parents.


Hypothetical Three: You are a state tournament director. A child with a fine motor impairment is entered in Lincoln-Douglas Debate. Her parent contacted you and demanded that you order any debater facing her child to “slow down” and not spread so she can “keep up” while flowing. She also states that spreading should not be allowed anyway because that is not “real LD.” This parent (query why the coach did not initiate this conversation) is seeking a competitive advantage for her daughter, not an accommodation. Asking a fast speaker to speak slower is akin to asking a fast runner to run slower. She demands that other competitors forego using a skill. As to whether spreading in LD should be permitted, this is a question for competition and rules committees.

Hypothetical Four: A child with an ADHD diagnosis who wishes to do Public Forum Debate asks if he can have extra prep time because of his ADHD. You have not noticed that the child had any problems with concentration during class or in practice and did not know that the child had ADHD. There are two issues. The child’s eligibility should be determined by a team of professionals, not you as the coach (If the child is already eligible, query your school did not inform you.). As to the request for extra prep time, this request would appear to be a variance from the one fixed rule in Public Forum: the timing of speeches and prep time, an impermissible alteration of the rules of the activity.

Hypothetical Five: You are observing one of your teams in a novice round. One of the opposing school’s competitors has a physical disability and uses a notetaker to flow the round (he uses a note-taker during his coursework



during the school day). It appears that the note-taker, a recent high school graduate who excelled in Policy Debate, is flowing in potential substantive responses for the competitor and pulling up potential blocks for the competitor to read. The competitor’s note-taker is not providing a permissible support; rather, he is providing an unfair competitive advantage, even if it is with the best of intentions.

Hypothetical Six: You are running the tab room for Congressional Debate at the state tournament. A competitor with a disability that causes impulse control problems received very low ranks in Congressional Debate because he routinely interrupted other speakers. He and his coach argued that his interruptions of other speakers should not be “penalized” because they are the effects of his disability. Even if the routine interruptions were related to the speaker’s disability, these interruptions disrupt and fundamentally alter the nature of Congressional Debate.

Hypothetical Seven: You are a head coach of a public school debate team. One of your Oratory competitors uses a wheelchair. The upcoming tournament is at a faith-based nonpublic school, which is not fully accessible to students who use wheelchairs. You ask the tournament host to move Oratory to the first floor, which is accessible. The school says no, because the first floor is required for Policy Debate rounds, the tab room, and the judges’ lounge. You ask if the competitor can use the staff elevator to go and from her rounds. Again, the school says no because, by school policy, students are not permitted in the elevator. Your attendance at this tournament would violate Section 504 and the ADA, because it is inaccessible to your competitor,

even if the faith-based private school is not subject to the ADA. Furthermore, if the private school is governed by Section 504, it has a duty to not discriminate, which would include making these very minor changes.

Hypothetical Eight: A parent of a child with a learning disability approaches you and demands that you name her child as one of the four Lincoln-Douglas debaters the school is sending to a “national circuit” tournament. The child ranked seventh best on the team according to tournament results and had received all modifications and supports called for in his plan. The parent demands that her child be given a spot because debate is essential to his self-esteem. The assignment to the four slots for this tournament is a coaching decision. Section 504 and the ADA do not override results of competition or guarantee a spot in a selective activity.

Hypothetical Nine: One of your Prose/Poetry competitors has a physical disability and uses a wheelchair and other assistive devices. She complains to you that she does not feel like a “real” member of the team. She rides in a separate van to tournaments, stays in a hotel room alone, routinely sits separately from the team in the “accessible seating” section at awards assemblies, and did not receive recognition of her recent final round appearance on the team’s social media feeds. This competitor is literally and figuratively isolated from her team. This isolation is discrimination, as she is not enjoying the equal benefits of debate team membership (Knott County School District, 2010).

Hypothetical Ten: On the last night of the final overnight trip of the year, to the state tournament, a Congress competitor with autism confides in you that he is being

“picked on.” When you ask for more details, he tells you that his underwear has been thrown in the toilet, he was pushed out of bed and made to sleep on the floor, a senior took his snacks and ate them in his presence, and all of his roommates were calling him the r-word. He now brings spare underwear to tournaments and hides them in his briefcase. This has been going on all year, and the competitor says he repeatedly asked his teammates to stop. You had no idea this abuse was happening. You confront the senior, who laughed and accused the competitor with disabilities of being unable to take a joke. The senior is currently 4-0 with top speaker points in LD and has been nominated for the state association’s Senior of the Year award. You must take prompt and effective steps to investigate and remedy bullying and harassment. The senior, by his statements, conceded

the truth of the allegations of disability-based harassment, which is never a “joke.” You are required to take action to address the harms incurred by the target, as well as providing effective consequences to the perpetrator. In our view, at a very minimum, the senior has forfeited his right to continue competing at the state tournament and his candidacy for Senior of the Year.

Conclusion Following the principles set forth in this article will help schools comply with Section 504 and the ADA, as well as other laws with a non-discrimination requirement, such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (OCR, 2013). Additionally, schools will follow a key portion of the National Speech & Debate Association’s Code of Honor. That code provides the following:

“Respect: A member respects individual differences and fosters diversity. They promote tolerance, inclusion, and empowerment for people from a variety of backgrounds including race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, and ability” (National Speech & Debate Association, 2018, p. 18).

Thomas A. Mayes is an attorney for the Iowa Department of Education. He earned his law degree from The University of Iowa College of Law and a master’s degree in education leadership from Lehigh University. An NSDA member in high school, he frequently judges at debate tournaments in Iowa. Perry A. Zirkel is University Professor Emeritus of Education and Law at Lehigh University. He is the author of Section 504, the ADA, and the Schools. He earned his J.D. and Ph.D. from the University of Connecticut and his LL.M. from Yale University.

References Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 12101 et seq. (2014). Bereuter, Letter to, 5 NDLR ¶ 84 (U.S. Department of Justice 1993). Holler, R.A., & Zirkel, P.A. (2008). Section 504 and public schools: A national survey concerning “Section 504-only” students. NASSP Bulletin, 19-43. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §§ 1400 et seq. (2014). Knott County Sch. Dist., 110 LRP 67417 (OCR 2010). National Speech & Debate Association (2018). High School Unified Manual 2017-2018, available at https://www.speechanddebate.org/high-school-unified-manual. Negrón, Letter to, 62 IDELR 185 (OCR 2013). Office for Civil Rights, Protecting Students with Disabilities: Frequently Asked Questions About Section 504 and the Education of Children with Disabilities, 67 IDELR 189 (2015), available at https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/504faq.html. Office for Civil Rights, Responding to Bullying of Students with Disabilities, 64 IDELR 115 (2014), available at https://www2.ed.gov/ about/offices/list/ocr/letters/colleague-bullying-201410.pdf. Office for Civil Rights, Dear Colleague Letter of January 25, 2013, 60 IDELR 167 (2013), available at https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/ list/ocr/letters/colleague-201301-504.pdf. S-1 v. Turlington, 635 F.2d 342 (5th Cir. Unit B 1981). Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. § 794 (2014). Section 504 Regulations, 34 C.F.R. pt. 104 (2014). Sullivan, K.A., Lantz, P.J., & Zirkel, P.A. (2000). Leveling the playing field or leveling the players? Section 504, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and interscholastic sports. Journal of Special Education, 33, 258-267. Weber, M.C. (2012). Procedures and remedies under Section 504 and the ADA for public school children with disabilities. Journal of the National Association of Administrative Law Judiciary, 32, 611-647. Zirkel, P.A. (2009). The ADAA and its effect on Section 504 students. Journal of Special Education Leadership, 22, 1-8.


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INCLUSION: Our Commitments to Our Community


by Steve Schappaugh Inclusion is not bringing people into what already exists; it is making a new space, a better space for everyone.” – George Dei


his quotation by George Dei encapsulates what the NSDA is striving to accomplish in conjunction with the speech and debate community. “Caucusing for Change: Envisioning A New Way Forward,” our cover story in the 2017 September/ October issue of Rostrum, focused on themes that arose from our series of Coaches’ Caucuses at the 2017 National Tournament. The subtitle emphasizes turning words into action. Themes and specific recommendations from the caucuses have been a central focus of NSDA Directors meetings this past fall and winter. Through a series of surveys, reflections, readings, and an evaluation of our capacity, the Board of Directors’ Governance Committee approved a number of proposals in January slated for completion by the conclusion of the 2018 National Tournament. Below, you will find the commitments we have made for this school year. By June, we plan to accomplish the following items. 1.

Develop a process to involve multiple stakeholders in writing a public commitment to inclusion.

2. Implement processes that will increase the diversity of judges throughout the entirety of the National Tournament. Meanwhile, actively share and promote, to the judges and to the membership, the value of having diverse perspectives when crowning a national champion.



3. Increase the diversity of National Tournament officials. 4. Collect information on the current diversity of District Committees with a draft of ideas for increasing diversity on the local level available for community feedback. 5. Continually work to increase diversity of webinar presenters. 6. Create a webinar series on issues of identity for students and coaches, with at least one before Nationals. 7. Increase awareness of the Coaches’ Caucuses meeting times and locations prior to Nationals with hopes of increasing attendance. 8. Contact coaches of previous finalists to gather data on the gender breakdown for NSDA final rounds to identify trends. 9. Review the process for selecting alumni and other adult award winners to ensure they share the NSDA’s commitment to inclusion. 10. Complete a draft version of a best practices guide for tournaments concerning gender-neutral restrooms. 11. Amend the judge paradigm for Nationals to ask judges their pronoun. 12. Identify consultants to provide cultural competence training for coaches for the 2018-2019 school year. We are also working with the NFHS to include cultural competency as an element of judge training resources. 13. Add books to the online NSDA store that cover issues of diversity/ inclusion from more diverse authors. 14. Identify authors to produce a Rostrum article on gender identity with vocabulary terms and pronouns for publication during the 2018-2019 school year.

15. Draft a guideline for optional use in team manuals that offers a dress code which is not gendered and is inclusive of transgender and intersex students for feedback and revision. 16. Create templates for schools to invite superintendents and principals to attend tournaments. The templates will exist to a) invite key leadership positions at their schools; b) encourage district leadership to invite school leadership to their district tournament, with a focus on school administrators from underresourced and underfunded schools; and c) invite the school administrators from under-resourced and underfunded schools to attend the National Tournament. 17. Enhance and market the available training on our tabulation tools and services for the 2018-2019 season to make running and hosting tournaments easier for new audiences. While we hope these steps will help “create a better space for everyone,” we know our work is just beginning. This list is not exhaustive of our diversity and inclusion work. The Board of Directors named inclusion as a core value in our new strategic plan, and we are always looking for additional ways to produce inclusive programs and outcomes. The support of the Caucuses is meaningful, ongoing, and instrumental in our ability to progress. We are grateful to the individuals who have helped inform our actions and look forward to future recommendations. If you would like more information, or have suggestions for assisting our inclusion efforts, please contact Executive Director Scott Wunn at director@speechanddebate.org.

Steve Schappaugh is the Director of Community Engagement for the NSDA.

We’ve updated the Code of Honor!

CODE OF HONOR “As a member of the National Speech & Debate Association,

The National Speech & Debate Association’s Code of Honor was originally adopted in 2007 to emphasize the importance of respect, honor, leadership, service, and integrity for students in our activity.

I pledge to uphold the highest standards of integrity, humility,

Ten years in, the NSDA Board of Directors approved an update to the Code of Honor to set more explicit expectations regarding respect for others. This change is one reflection of the organization’s recently adopted value of inclusion.

Members recognize that integrity is central to earning the trust,

What’s Different? The value of respect now specifies the promotion of tolerance, inclusion, and empowerment regarding race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, and ability. The Code also uses the singular “they/them/their” pronoun throughout. The NSDA adopted the use of the singular “they” for other materials and resources in 2016.

Online Resource The updated Code of Honor is displayed in its entirety here, and a new version of our downloadable resource to put up in the classroom or squad room is available online at www.speechanddebate.org/ code-of-honor. We’d like to thank all the individuals who contributed to this change through their past participation in Coaches’ Caucuses, authorship in Rostrum, and more.

respect, leadership, and service in the pursuit of excellence.” Integrity: An honor society member obeys the highest ethical standards and adheres to the rules of the organization. respect, and support of one’s peers. Integrity encompasses the highest regard for honesty, civility, justice, and fairness. Humility: A member does not regard oneself more highly than others. Regardless of a person’s level of success, an individual always looks beyond oneself to appreciate the inherent value of others. Respect: A member respects individual differences and fosters diversity. They promote tolerance, inclusion, and empowerment for people from a variety of backgrounds, including race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, and ability. Leadership: A member influences others to take positive action toward productive change. Members commit to thoughtful and responsible leadership that promotes the other core values in the Code of Honor. Service: A member exercises their talents to provide service to peers, community, and the activity. At all times a member is prepared to work constructively to improve the lives of others. Adopted September 23, 2007 | Updated December 6, 2017 © National Speech & Debate Association



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BRITTNEY COOPER: Finding Identity in Identity Politics by Megan Muncie


he 2007 American Book Award winner Michael Eric Dyson has described Brittney Cooper as “the boldest young feminist writing today.” Cooper’s work has accumulated numerous accolades for tackling the simultaneously evolving and stagnant role of Black women in our society, including the Olga Vives Award from the National Organization of Women in 2016 and the Black Feminist Waymaker and Shapeshifter Award from Black Women’s Blueprint, Inc. in 2017. However, Cooper—who splits her time between being a professor, an author, and a public speaker—began her rhetorical career finding her voice in high school Policy Debate. “The debate team was the first place I fit, the first place that my loud-mouth, yet slightly introverted Black girl self felt included, seen, and sure of myself,” recalls Cooper, class of 1998 at Ruston High School in Louisiana. Her formative years on Ruston’s Policy Debate team led her to a lifelong love of engaging with critical argumentation and her position as an associate professor at Rutgers University, teaching Women’s and Gender Studies as well as Africana Studies. She describes her expertise as “19th and early 20th century Black women intellectuals,” which she became impassioned to research after realizing the disparity of education surrounding Black female intellectuals versus Black male intellectuals while pursuing her undergraduate degrees in English and Political Science at Howard University. In 2010, Cooper co-founded the Crunk Feminist Collective, a blog where women of color authors have created a space to showcase the perspective of “hip hop generation feminists of color, queer and straight, in the academy and without,” according to their mission

statement. The blog, where Cooper writes under the name “crunktastic,” now has a readership of more than one million and was named a top feminist blog by New York Magazine as well as a top race blog by TheRoot.com. By 2017, a collection of essays called The Crunk Feminist Collection (Feminist Press, 2017) was published featuring essays written by Cooper and her colleagues between 2010 and 2015. Later that year, Cooper released her first individual book Beyond Respectability: The Intellectual Thought of Race Women (University of Illinois Press, 2017) showcasing the Black feminist intellectuals she highlights as equally important as Black feminist “do-ers” who have made tangible contributions to the social elevation of Black women. The idea for the book stemmed from her dissertation while working toward her Ph.D. in American Studies from Emory University in 2009. As she states, “Black women were amazing and doing wonderful work, but when we talked about them, we talked about how they built churches and how they built schools and how they built nursing homes, but no one talked about the sets of ideas that all of these fierce Black women came together to help Black communities.” Her book released this month, Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower (St. Martin’s Press, 2018), was named a Best/Most Anticipated Book of 2018 by Glamour Magazine, Chicago Reader, and Bustle. Cooper’s collected essays address the challenges facing modern Black feminists while weaving in her own personal insights and experiences discovering her power as a Black feminist. She points to modern examples such

Download our special Spark Leaders poster series featuring Brittney Cooper and other speech and debate alumni at www.speechanddebate.org/black-history-month. 50


as Serena Williams, Michelle Obama, and Beyoncé as examples of Black women utilizing their “eloquent rage:” a term Cooper uses to describe the power of Black women to channel their anger into a productive rather than destructive force to passionately pursue their goals. Cooper credits her experience participating in high school speech and debate with sparking her devotion to education. In her own words, she says, “I became a professor because I wanted to engage in the kinds of intellectual inquiry, and indeed to examine the kinds of critical thought—feminist and critical race theory—that I first learned to love while cutting cards and writing frontlines for Policy Debate.” Megan Muncie is a senior at Presentation High School in California. She currently serves as a publications intern for the NSDA.


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SIERRA DISTRICT: Committed to Increasing Diversity and Inclusivity in Central California by Allie Kelly and Emily Weaver Editor’s Note: Throughout this feature, for ease of communication and clarity, we use terms and labels like “marginalized students” or “marginalized population(s).” This article is inclusive of students of color, migrant and undocumented students, students lacking economic privilege, women, LGBTQ students, and students with disabilities.


very freshman begins their career at California’s Orosi High School in a speech and debate classroom. In the program led by threediamond coach Karson Kalashian, football players double as orators, cheerleaders do Dramatic Interpretation, and math geniuses prepare cases in Policy Debate. Yet, in Karson’s class, each student is simply a speaker. “One of my favorite memories as a coach is the first time a student says their speech to you,” Karson relates, going on his seventeenth year as a forensic instructor. “They reveal so much about themselves. I think there is something very vulnerable about a kid when they are in the middle of their performance. You see their inside shining through.” A past competitor himself, Karson hopes to inspire his students to be vulnerable as speakers and leaders. However, what makes Karson’s program truly unique is its significant enrollment of marginalized students. “[Latinx and immigrant students] are a large percentage of our population in Central Valley and the Sierra District,” he explains. “The school I coach at right now is 98% Hispanic and 92% low income.” Other schools in the area face similar circumstances. As district chair Nicole Jennison notes, “Fresno Unified is the 4th largest district in the state, 67% Hispanic, 88% poverty, 100% free and reduced lunch—and only three schools have [speech and debate] programs. Difficulties include getting kids to tournaments because of parent work schedules and parents who are unable to judge because of language barriers.



Fresno county does have a migrant speech program, but it is totally separate from anything NSDA or CHSSA.” Karson and assistant coach Angelique Ronald have committed themselves to making speech and debate a more accessible activity for marginalized students. “This is such a wonderful activity,” Karson says, “and I don’t want to feel like it’s something that just a fancy school or people with money can do. I know that’s not true.” While the speech and debate team at Orosi gives students in a historically underrepresented population the opportunity to compete, Karson sees the need for more stable speech and debate teams in his community. He wishes there was more widespread support for programs like theirs. “I don’t know any school in our area that doesn’t have a football team, a baseball team, and a basketball team,” he reasons. “You could be the richest school or the poorest school. The football team could be bad, but you would still have a football team next year. Why doesn’t every school have a speech and debate team, too?” Fellow committee member and twodiamond coach Milla Smith believes in the activity’s universal appeal. “Speech and debate class is the equitable activity and organization on campus... You don’t have to have any expensive equipment. You don’t have to be an athletic rock star. You don’t have to be a musical talent. You don’t have to be an academic genius. You have a voice. Use it!” In an activity that provides valuable speaking and leadership skills to the

students involved, Karson is discouraged that speech and debate teams are not prioritized in schools with marginalized populations. Angelique shares his concerns. “The number one thing I see as a glaring error is there aren’t really role models for a lot of students. A large percent of our population is Latinx, and we don’t have a single coach who identifies as Latinx. It’s important for students to be able to see leadership and coaches who look like them.”

MEET THE COMMITTEE Nicole Jennison, Chair Edison Computech High School Fresno, CA Andrew Botwin Clovis North High School Fresno, CA

Karson B. Kalashian Orosi High School Orosi, CA

Angeligue Ronald Orosi High School Orosi, CA

Milla Smith Bullard High School Fresno, CA

At the center of the Orosi High School team is the idea that all students, regardless of their backgrounds, have access to the competitive spirit of speech and debate. As sophomore Kai Simmavanh explains, “This team gave me motivation and determination to speak proudly and properly. These are the people I call my family.” Senior teammate Jasmin Valero agrees: “Speech and debate gave me coaches I see as second parents and teammates I see as family, family that stuck by me when I most needed it and when I just needed laughs.” Building on this sense of inclusivity has given students in the Sierra District the confidence and resources to grow their skills as communicators, and come together in an activity that they all are passionate about. “You could be this color, that color; you could be rich, you could be poor—and you still get to create; you still get to compete,” Karson explains. “That’s the great equalizer.” Karson believes a thriving speech and debate team not only promotes equality and diversity, but fosters learning. He comments, “How many kids from some small place, that no one is paying attention to, have the opportunity to get up and give a ten-minute Oratory that they wrote about something that is really important to them?” Through speech and debate, high schoolers are pushed to research and advocate important issues, all while building confidence in their skills as performers. Karson explains what he sees as the highlight of competition: “An

adult is sitting there and saying [to each student], ‘It’s your turn to talk, and I’m going to sit here very respectfully and listen.’ How does that not make a young person feel important?” Speech and debate provides a forum to empower marginalized students throughout California’s Sierra District. That are able to succeed at tournaments and translate their communication skills to life beyond high school. Angelique offers additional insight into how the National Speech & Debate Association can continue to build a culture of inclusivity. “I think we have to first acknowledge there are differences that exist, and then figure out a way to create accommodating, open access to students from all backgrounds. The beautiful thing about speech and debate is it affords opportunities to kids based purely on the amount of work they put into it.” Together with Karson, Angelique has made it her mission to bring this life-changing activity to marginalized students in her own community. She stresses that the Sierra District is just like any other. “Regardless of their background or experience,” she says, “every kid is nervous the first round of the day, and I have to talk them down in the exact same way.” The most rewarding part of Angelique’s job is building relationships with her students and teaching them the skills to become successful beyond the classroom. Although both coaches enjoy cultivating competitive spirit within their own team, winning is not a priority.

Rather, Karson sees success within his team when his students gain confidence or show a hard-working attitude. The skills his students learn during their speech and debate experience, Karson hopes, will prepare them for the future. “I cannot think of a better activity,” he says, “that directly translates to almost everything anyone does for the rest of their lives—regardless of their career.” When his students graduate, Karson hopes they have the tools to become lawyers, doctors, and business owners. Allowing students of all backgrounds to have access to these tools is what it means to bring inclusivity to speech and debate. It is an issue that demands action. Angelique says it best: “A big goal for me is trying to do outreach. I think it’s one thing for us to talk about these problems [in diversity], but the hard part is trying to solve them.” Karson and Angelique hope that their program serves as a catalyst to bringing coaches and resources to other schools with marginalized populations. In the years to come, Karson and Angelique want to see programs like theirs continue to grow high schoolers in underserved communities—because they believe that all students can be successful. Change, Karson understands, starts from within. “What I wish speech and debate could be treated like across the country,” he concludes, “we’re getting to that [place] from the bottom up at our school. In the future, I only see it growing.”

Allie Kelly is a junior at Denver East High School in Colorado. She currently serves as a publications intern for the NSDA. Emily Weaver is a senior at Ann Richards High School in Texas. She also serves as a publications intern for the NSDA.

(opposite page) The Sierra District named Chloe Baly, Pooja Heragu, Nick Boroski, Richard McCoy, and Manvir Cheema to its World Schools Debate district team in 2017. • (near left) Orosi High School recognized Principal Roberto Vaca (pictured, center) with the NSDA District Administrator of the Year Award during the 2017 District Qualifier.



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Learn how to move to the next level in your debate career Learn the strategies that DEBATE CHAMPIONS use to win tournaments It's a BLAST! Although you work hard and learn a lot, it will be a fun-filled camp with many lasting memories

Listen to what Nick Ramsey said about the MSU Debate Camp



2 Week Polley (July 1 - July 14)

$600 Commuters • $1,400 Dorm

3 Week Polley

(July 1 - July 21) $900 Commuters • $2,000 Dorm

1 Week Novice

(July 15 - July 20) $200 Commuters • $500 Dorm

Event Camp Week

(July 16 - July 20) Uncoln-Douglas • Public Forum College Credit Options for 2 & 3 week camps $200, 3 credit hours, public speaking


MSU debaters have been in elims of all major national tournaments, including NDT semifinals. Recent MSDI alumni have been offered over $400,000 in college debate scholarships.

New 3-week options.

Three-week students may choose from a traditional judge, kritik, or event camp track for their final week.

Focus is on skill development:


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Space is limited. To register go to debate.missouristate.edu and select MSDI For more information contact EricMorrisOMiuouriState.edu


417.496.7141 I

This is the most effective means to rapid debater development. You will be in more practice rounds and speeches at the MSU debate camp. You will be in practice rounds and speeches by day 2 of camp, far faster than most debate camps.

Pragmatic approach for your circuit:

Many of our attendees come from middle of the topic circuits that use lay judges. MSDI will cover EVERY core case on the Immigration topic and negative strategies that will work on YOUR circuit. We will teach you how to adapt arguments to your circuit.


MSU Debate Camp is about half the expense of many debate institutes, but with staff comparable to top labs in other camps. By adding the college credit option, you might save an amount comparable to full tuition.

2018 COOLIDGE CUP The Coolidge Foundation is setting out to find the top debaters in America! The Coolidge Cup National Debate Tournament begins in the winter of 2018 with several qualifying competitions. Interested debaters can qualify through the Coolidge Foundation’s online tournament (see below link). Top placers earn a free trip to compete in the Coolidge Cup Championship Tournament taking place July 2-4, 2018 in historic Plymouth Notch, Vermont. More than $10,000 in scholarships and prizes will be awarded to the winners of the 2018 Coolidge Cup — including the $7,500 first place prize.

COMPETE TODAY coolidgefoundation.org/coolidge-cup-online-debate-tournament


DR. BARBARA LOWE: Speech and Debate Family Pulls Together for Beloved Coach by Erin Swope


amily comes in many shapes and sizes. Sometimes it is the family one is born into; sometimes it is the family one creates for oneself. But, by far, family is defined by the ability to stand together during difficult times. In Oxford, Mississippi, one forensic team is truly showing the power of family. This particular story begins in 2004, when Dr. Barbara Lowe started teaching at Oxford High School. When she first applied for the job, Barbara thought she was vying for a position teaching English. During her interview, however, she was asked whether or not she could teach debate. Having debated Policy during her junior and senior years at McComb High School in Mississippi, she replied yes. As a result, she ended up replacing a teacher who had previously convinced the principal to offer two debate classes. Barbara laughs, “I had no idea I was changing the course of

“Seeing the students and laughing with them is some of best medicine I’ve been given!” — Dr. Barbara Lowe 58


my professional life when I blithely said I could teach a debate class.” Yet she’s enjoyed teaching these classes immensely. “Being able to learn debate skills during school hours means that many students get to experience debate who would otherwise not. They don’t all compete, but they all learn the skills needed to be critical thinkers, researchers, writers, and articulate speakers.” Fast forward to August 28, 2017—the day the Oxford speech and debate coach was diagnosed with cancer. Barbara immediately went from the world of teaching and coaching to the world of chemotherapy and radiation. Soon, her family and friends as well as her team heard the news. When Barbara told her team the very next day, she says, “They were shocked—which put all of them in

Dr. Barbara Lowe is a one-diamond coach from Oxford High School in Mississippi.

the same boat with me. It was also hard in different ways. I’ve known some students since they were freshmen. Others I’d known for three weeks. So there was a real range of feelings for the students.” Her diagnosis came at a rough time for the team. Barbara was diagnosed two weeks before the first tournament of the season. Because of her treatment, she had to step back from her responsibilities immediately. Unfortunately, this left the team without their one-diamond coach.

However, in the spirit of family, numerous people stepped up. As soon as they heard, Barbara’s team captains told her not to worry—they would get the team ready. One of the captain’s mothers even volunteered to serve as the team’s advisor. The school principal quickly designated Susan Kelly as Barbara’s assistant coach so she could make all of the tournament arrangements and travel with the team. Barbara is beyond grateful. “[The students] definitely could not have competed without her!” Since then, Barbara says, “Susan organized and, with the help of our students, former students, Jarrius [Adams], and other area NSDA coaches we refer to as #TeamMississippi, hosted our third annual Charger Challenge Speech & Debate Tournament. The speech and debate family is BIG in Mississippi!” Jarrius Adams, a Public Policy and Political Science major at the University of Mississippi and the 2015 NSDA National Student of the Year, also stepped in to help. Jarrius first met Barbara in 2016 when he worked with her and her students teaching kids how to debate at the local Boys & Girls Club. When he later found out through Facebook that Barbara had been diagnosed with cancer, he says he “immediately felt guilty and felt [the need] to get up and do something about it.” Jarrius offered to assist the Oxford squad, and since then, the arrangement has benefited more than just the students on the team. As Barbara explains, “The best part is, while I am truly a debate coach, Jarrius can teach

them skills to excel in individual events. I’ve told him that I need to be there, too, so I can learn how to coach the kids who are more interested in IEs than debate!” Jarrius agrees that while he can help out with debate, his strength lies in speech. He recounts how one boy on the team wanted to compete in Humorous Interpretation but didn’t have much guidance with blocking and performing. That was where Jarrius stepped in. He says, “I wanted to maintain that level of competitiveness and create a new outlet for people to participate in speech events.” Now, Jarrius says that he spends his Tuesday and Thursday mornings coaching Barbara’s two debate classes. He says they nicknamed him “The Speech God” and made him sign a contract saying he would give them all of the secrets of speech and debate. He loves working with the team and says, “Originally I thought I was doing them a favor, but really it was a give-and-take relationship.” Two weeks after her diagnosis, Barbara’s team had their first competition of the season. The morning of the tournament, an Oxford School District bus pulled up in front of Barbara’s house and all 28 students poured out. She recalls, “I got hugs from kids who felt like my own as well as from kids I barely knew. We took pictures and the team captain gave his speech on my front lawn! They piled back on the bus, assuring me that they were ready. They weren’t kidding. They closed out PF Debate and won overall sweepstakes for the tournament.”

Barbara is incredibly proud of the way the team has pulled together to help each other. “As a coach, it has confirmed everything I believe about teaching and coaching. If you teach kids how to think and research and write and articulate their thoughts, they cannot only do it themselves but they can teach other kids how to do it as well.” Since August, Barbara’s students have continued to excel at competitions and offer their support. “I have always been close to my students,” she says, “but this year has taught me how much I depend on them. Every couple of weeks, one of the captains has texted me to see when they could come over. I’ve had 15 kids on my front porch, laughing and telling me tournament stories. They’ve brought cookies, flowers, cards, and most of all, themselves.” In the realm of competition, Jarrius says that the ball is still rolling. They are still preparing for tournaments, and both Barbara and Jarrius are pleased with how far the team has come. Of course, before every tournament, the team continues to stop by Barbara’s house. As Jarrius explains, “We take photos and videos and make sure to keep her in the process, because she still wants to be there.” Even in tough times, this family never stops supporting one another.

Erin Swope is a senior at Milton High School in Wisconsin. She currently serves as a publications intern for the NSDA.



Beehive Forensics Institute July 8-22, 2018 bfi.utah.edu Our regionally diverse and nationally recognized staff offer students insights that have helped them win over a dozen national championships in high school and collegiate forensics. Winners of the camp tournament receive partial scholarships to the University of Utah

Public Forum Policy Debate Lincoln-Douglas Debate Extemporaneous Speaking Congress (One Week Only) Coaches’ Clinic (One Week Only)


ONE or TWO week options Resident or commuter July 8-15 or July 8-22 Tuition as low as $400 Discounts for early registration


College Credit Personalized Instruction 8:1 Student to Faculty Ratio A focus on critiqued practice Customizable curriculum Social events

STAFF Century of combined coaching experience All staff members have coached state, regional and national champions

2018 Staff Includes: Jason Jordan - Univ. of Utah Carlos Tarin – Univ. of Texas - El Paso Kyle Cheesewright – College of Idaho Jeannie Hunt - Northwest College (WY) Gordon Peer - Green Canyon HS (UT) & more coming soon!

The Victory Briefs Institute

Visit www.VBIdebate.com Or call 330-3-DEBATE Why VBI? 1. Excellence: VBI alumni have won over 50 national championships across the TOC, NSDA, NCFL, and NDCA, in addition to hundreds of national invitationals, round robins, and state tournaments and even a world championship. 2. Trust: With over five thousand alumni and students from 35+ states and 250+ schools each year, VBI is the most widely trusted camp in the country. 3. Curriculum: Our 4:1 student-instructor ratio allows us to prioritize one-on-one mentorship and active learning, rather than large lectures.

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All sessions offer both LD & PF instruction. Don’t let cost deter you: we are committed to ensuring that every student can attend VBI, regardless of financial barriers. Last year, VBI offered over $80,000 in financial assistance.



u FOURTH DIAMOND u VALENTIN JIMENEZ LV Hightower HS, TX December 11, 2017 • 10,001 Points

u THIRD DIAMOND u DARIO L. CAMARA Western HS, FL November 27, 2017 • 10,017 Points

u THIRD DIAMOND u DENISE RAEDER JOHNSON Fargo Davies HS, ND December 20, 2017 • 6,016 Points

u SECOND DIAMOND u LINDA ALT Canterbury HS, IN September 20, 2017 • 3,863 Points

u SECOND DIAMOND u ROBYN TRIBE JOHNSON Star Valley HS, WY October 31, 2017 • 3,014 Points

u SECOND DIAMOND u ALZANA RAE NUZZOLILLO Carrollton HS, OH November 14, 2017 • 3,005 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u CHRIS ROTHGEB Parkview HS, MO August 31, 2017 • 3,549 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u AMANDA FORD Spring Hill HS, KS September 23, 2017 • 1,900 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u JONATHAN WATERS Marist School, GA October 7, 2017 • 1,701 Points



u FIRST DIAMOND u MICHAEL V. MCCABE La Salle College HS, PA October 15, 2017 • 1,524 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u PAUL HACKENBERGER Winnetonka HS, MO October 16, 2017 • 1,500 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u JAMES LEWIS University School, OH October 29, 2017 • 1,500 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u JORDAN INNERARITY Hockaday School, TX October 30, 2017 • 1,596 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u GORDON PEER Green Canyon HS, UT October 31, 2017 • 2,644 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u PAUL MONTREUIL Centennial HS, ID October 31, 2017 • 3,517 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u AARRON SCHUREVICH Millard North HS, NE October 31, 2017 • 5,142 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u ALISON MCBEE Knoch Senior HS, PA November 14, 2017 • 1,672 Points

u FIRST DIAMOND u AMANDA L. DOLINGER North Kansas City HS, MO December 1, 2017 • 1,501 Points


STOP TALKING. START SPEAKING. Our mission is to provide students of all backgrounds with the tools to compete and build a better Speech & Debate Community. SWSDI doesn’t just want to help you be a better speaker – we want you to be a better leader. Our instructors are expert coaches and former competitors. Our curriculum is built to accommodate all skill levels. But don’t take our word for it! See what our alumni have said about their experience!

“We had instructors with a lot of experience, as well as the perspectives of judges, coaches, and competitors.”

Southwest Speech & Debate Institute Tournament

“They created the most enjoyable team atmosphere I have ever experienced.” “All I have been able to think about was how much you and our Lab Leaders had taught me in a single week.”

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“There was a lot of communication and help among everyone. There was a very comfortable feeling that I really liked & hope to feel again next year.”

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Paradise Valley, AZ

2018 Summer Institute

NIETOC bids in all IEs TOC bids in Public Forum, & Congressional Debate

July 5-19, 2018 at Arizona State University


Learn more about us & apply at:



From Germany to Croatia: USA Debate experiences big wins, different cultures, and team bonding by Ella Michaels

Nikhil Ramaswamy, Shreya Argawala, Shreyoshi Das, Emily Grantham, Leila Saklou, and Brian Zhou


or USA Debate, the final months of 2017 passed in a whirlwind of airport layovers, train rides, impeccable outfit coordination, and notecards in every color. There was no rest for the weary as team members traveled from New York to Germany to Texas, finishing off the year in Croatia. On November 9, six members of the USA Debate Team and coaches Aaron and Cindi Timmons landed in Stuttgart, Germany, for the EurOpen, our first international trip of the year. Just a couple weeks earlier, two USA teams— which included five of the six members competing in Germany—had attended the Alfred “Tuna” Snider WSDC Tournament at Cornell University. The teams closed out finals with USA Blue (Shreyoshi Das, Ranen Miao, Leila Saklou) defeating USA Red (Piper Doyle, Emily Grantham, Nikhil Ramaswamy) in a close decision. USA Debate headed to the EurOpen in good spirits, but we knew a different kind of challenge

awaited us overseas; there was no room for complacency. Our first two rounds took place the day after we landed. We debated both sides of the motion, “This House believes that the EU should reform into a federalist state,” the first of two prepared topics at the tournament. Rounds didn’t start until the afternoon, so both teams spent the morning doing drills and putting finishing touches on cases. The day grew even better when both teams won their first two rounds. By day three of the EurOpen we had finished preliminary rounds, including three impromptu rounds and two more rounds on the final prepared motion of the tournament: “This House would not celebrate nationally important historical figures involved in deeply immoral actions.” Both teams broke to octafinals with USA Red (Doyle, Grantham, Michaels) as the top seed, and USA Blue (Das, Miao, Saklou) as the seventh seed. We celebrated our success in prelims, and wanted to do

everything possible to replicate it in outrounds; both teams ran drills on the train ride back to the hotel. Octafinals and quarterfinals took place the next day—but first, time to see a castle! Rounds did not begin until the late afternoon, so Team USA joined a tour of Ludwigsburg Palace, and needless to say, we all wanted to move in. And with 452 rooms, it might just have space for us. Both teams won the first two elim rounds, and we returned to the hotel to get some rest before the final day. As no American team had ever advanced past quarterfinals at the EurOpen, USA Red and Blue had both broken a national record heading into the last day of competition. After a defeat in semifinals debating about compulsory military service, USA Blue finished the tournament in third place. USA Red advanced. The final round against Team China was one of our more heated rounds to date. All-female Team USA Red debated all-male Team China on the motion, “This House believes that capitalism does more harm than good for women’s liberation.” The USA won on a 6-1 decision to become the first American team to ever win the EurOpen. Scarcely a week after returning from Germany, six members of Team USA gathered in Dallas for an intensive, two-day training session in preparation for their next tournament in Zagreb, Croatia. Affectionately dubbed “Turkey Training,” the practice session took

Follow #USADebate on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter | speechanddebate 66


place during the last weekend of the Thanksgiving break at Greenhill School. With the Winter Holidays Open in Croatia just two weeks away, the training was crucial in the preparation process; it allowed us to meet in person to discuss case ideas as opposed to relying on online video calls. On day two of the training, we watched videos of rounds from the EurOpen. Despite the cringing associated with watching ourselves debate, the training videos proved extremely useful in helping us learn from our own mistakes. After final words of encouragement from the coaches, Turkey Training came to a close. The team members exchanged heartfelt hugs, feeling more prepared than ever to tackle their next challenge: the Winter Holiday Open in Zagreb, Croatia. After departing from Texas with layovers in either Frankfurt or Amsterdam before finally arriving in Zagreb, we were extremely jet-lagged. The solution to our 16-hour flight fatigue was a dinner of burgers and fries, and a stroll through Zagreb’s town square, lit by glowing Christmas lights and sparkling winter decorations. Before returning to our hotel and beginning preparations for the following day, we warmed up even more with piping hot cups of cocoa. Although temperatures ran in the low 40s, the warmth of best friends reunited to do what we love gave us

more than enough strength to endure the freeze. The next morning, Team USA ran through a practice debate, jotting down points of information on neon notecards and perfecting our cases. Before we knew it, it was time to get ready for the competition. After the rush of getting in suit attire and consuming obscene amounts of Croatian french fries, USA Debate arrived at the Winter Holiday Open in Zagreb, the largest tournament in Europe. After thoughtful debates on whether certain regions had the right to independent statehood, the team retired for the night with a 2-0 record, ready to take on the next day with ambition and confidence. On the second day of the tournament, we started off by ensuring that any last-minute revisions to our cases were complete over coffee and a Croatian breakfast buffet. What lay ahead of us was four debate rounds and a culture night party to celebrate the customs and culinary traditions of the nations that were being represented. Post debating the impact of all-female film remakes and the significance of privacy versus security, six worn out debaters embraced the opportunity to re-energize by handing out American candy and Team USA highlighters and pens to fellow competitors and international friends at the culture party. As we tried German chocolates and snacked on Turkish Delight, the ability to discuss

Ranen Miao, Piper Doyle, Ella Michaels, Shreyoshi Das, Leila Saklou, and Emily Grantham

Learn more at www.speechanddebate.org/usa-debate.

politics, pop culture, and party rituals from our native countries reminded each of us of what makes debate so special. Following the culture party, the night ended with the announcement of the breaks for the following day of elimination rounds, with Team USA Red breaking top seed, and Team USA Blue breaking fifth seed. The final day of the tournament began with both teams advancing past their octafinal round, but unfortunately our debating came to an end in quarters debating the motion, “This house supports socialism.” Both losses can be attributed to misconceptions about the economic implications of the ideology; however, these misconceptions were immediately resolved in a crash course taught by our coaches over lunch. After scheduling time to revisit the subject to ensure that no such mistake will be made again in the future, we returned to the tournament venue to watch the final round of the Winter Holiday Open and support our friends from Slovenia and Pakistan as the competition drew to a close. After congratulating both teams and saying a final farewell to everyone at the awards ceremony, we returned to the center of Zagreb to enjoy the city’s winter festival and a lovely Italian meal before retiring to the hotel and packing for our early morning flights back to the States. Even though the flights home were delayed, missed, and rescheduled, all team members arrived home safely for the holidays content with the experiences behind them and looking forward to the new year. We would not see each other again in person until the HarvardWestlake Worlds Schools Tournament in January, but our support for each other is unwavering. We even have the matching bracelets to prove it!

Ella Michaels is a senior at North Hollywood High School in California. She also serves as a publications intern for the NSDA.



About the Public Debate Program

The Public Debate Program offers integrated class/critical thinking instruction and debate competition for secondary schools. Major educational and civil rights non-profit organizations in the US and abroad use PDP materials and programming for critical thinking, professional communication, language development, and girls’ and women’s empowerment instruction. The PDP proprietary competitive debate formats were designed by graduate education school faculty, secondary school administrators and teachers, and education and debate professionals. They were developed to maximize student educational outcomes and accelerate standards-based learning, as well as professional communication practice. The PDP promotes sophisticated public speaking, critical thinking, note taking, research, argumentation, and refutation skills. In 2017-18, the Public Debate Program will serve more than 800,000 teachers and students in 29 countries. Students learn skills appropriate for success in any debate format. Students trained in the PDP format have won high school policy and LD national championships, as well as the college BP/WUDC championship.

Middle School/High School Debate Summer Sessions

Middle school and high school students may participate in MSPDP and HSPDP parliamentary debate programs. The summer residential/commuter debate sessions feature an extraordinarily innovative curriculum, low 4-1 student-faculty ratio, small group instruction, certified staff and judges for all program instruction, and student-directed elective and open forum sessions. The 2018 summer program integrates student assessment portfolios for individual feedback and best practices updates during the 2018-2019 academic year. Students may attend one or more than one session – all sessions are appropriate for new and advanced debaters. High school students will have the opportunity to learn and practice the most popular college debate format, British Parliamentary/World Universities. All debate students receive a textbook and other curricular information designed for their format.

Other Information


Claremont Summer, in its 18 year, is an official program of the Claremont Colleges Debate Union, centered at Claremont McKenna College. Supplementary Programming – Essay writing training is integrated in all summer programs. It is offered by the staff of Claremont McKenna’s Center for Writing and Public Discourse. In addition, college admission officers meet with high school student groups to help students understand the intricacies and opportunities of the college application process. Debate students may arrive early for leadership/professional communication programming. The Leadership Program (high school) and Scholars Program (middle school) offer public speaking, discussion, multimedia presentation, interviewing, social networking, and team/group management training. High school students participate in an academic conference. Information is available online. About the Claremont Colleges – The Claremont Colleges consist of five extraordinarily prestigious and highly selective undergraduate colleges and two graduate schools. The Fiske Guide to Colleges noted that Claremont constituted “a collection of intellectual resources unmatched in America.” Claremont rd McKenna College is ranked as the 3 finest higher education institution, according to the College Consensus, an aggregation of leading college ranking services worldwide, including the Center for World University Rankings, Forbes, Times higher Education, QS World University Rankings, US News, and Washington Monthly.


CLAREMONT SUMMER Residential/commuter sessions for 500 debate and leadership communication students. For comprehensive Information and applications, visit claremontsummer.org. MIDDLE SCHOOL DEBATE Three sessions, with training in the Middle School Public Debate Program (MSPDP) format. Comprehensive instruction in advanced public speaking and argumentation – appropriate for MSPDP and other debate formats. The third session includes a summer championship tournament. Session 1 – June 16-21 Session 2 – July 6-11 Session 3 – July 28-August 4 HIGH SCHOOL DEBATE One session, with training in the High School Public Debate Program (HSPDP) and supplemental training in the leading college parliamentary format, British Parliamentary debating. HSPDP Session – July 15-22 OTHER SUMMER PROGRAMS There are leadership/professional communication programs for high school and middle school students, including public speaking, writing, and digital and social media training, These sessions are organized so that students may attend a communication scholars program and a consecutively scheduled debate session.

PROGRAM DIRECTOR John Meany Director of Forensics Claremont McKenna College Claremont Colleges Debate Union john.meany@cmc.edu



FALL CONFERENCE Conference on Electoral Reform

An effort to stimulate informed discussion, deliberation, and debate on general election politics and policy issues. The conference includes 3 keynote speeches and opportunities for high school students to present papers, engage in roundtable discussions, and offer multimedia presentations. Awards in each category.




Advanced communication training for academic and career success. The Claremont program uses the same instructional sessions, practice exercises, and curricular materials now used by higher education institutions, non-profit and government organizations, and businesses for training tens of thousands of individuals. Through the application of conference programming, case studies, training simulations, and roundtable discussions, students will develop the ability to identify problems, propose technically-achievable solutions, express vision, and motivate and manage others. The program offers professional training in public speaking, deliberative discussion, multimedia presentation, digital and social media, interviewing, report writing and editing, and team/organization management. In addition to diverse skills practices and topic-based research, students will prepare organization manuals, participate in a public policy case simulation, and engage in an academic conference. The summer program includes the opportunity to present papers, make presentations, and engage in discussion panels in the 2018 Conference on Health Care Policy. Students may participate in this session and the following summer debate session.


The middle school sessions offer primary professional communication and leadership training for younger students. These programs feature an age-appropriate version of the public speaking, roundtable discussion, multimedia presentation, club/organization management, and report writing and editing training and practices as the high school leadership session. Students may take the opportunity to join academic year political and social leadership and civic engagement programs for their schools and communities. Sessions are schedule to permit students to attend a consecutively-scheduled debate session. The session is appropriate for experienced and new speakers. Essay writing training is integrated in all summer programs. It is offered by the staff of Claremont McKenna’s Center for Writing and Public Discourse. In addition, college admission officers meet with high school student groups to help students understand the intricacies and opportunities of the college application process.

Claremont’s Civics in Action program features opportunities to learn and apply management communication skills and participate in national and international leadership projects and conferences. Programming is based on the Claremont Colleges Debate Union’s successful professional communication programs for higher educational institutions, non-profit organizations, businesses, and government agencies. National and international photojournalism, healthy eating, and civic engagement projects are underway.

SUMMER CONFERENCE Conference on Health Care Policy July 2018 – Integrated in the summer leadership session For Claremont Summer leadership communication programs, please visit claremontsummer.org. For Conference and CivAc Information, visit leadershipcommunication.center.

Program Director John Meany Director of Forensics Claremont McKenna College john.meany@cmc.edu

Welcome New Schools (October 1, 2017 through January 31, 2018) Don Tyson School Of Innovation East Palo Alto Academy East Palo Alto Phoenix Academy Fremont Christian School Mercy High School Mt. Pleasant High School - San Jose Oak Grove High School - San Jose Silver Creek High School William C. Overfelt High School Woodside High School King School Bishop John J. Snyder High School Somerset Academy Central Miramar (SACM) Solon High School Hampshire High School John D. O’Bryant School Of Mathematics And Science Madison Park Technical Vocational High School Norwood High School The American School Of Marrakesh Aberdeen High School Berman Hebrew Academy Medomak Valley High School Mount Desert Island High School Willmar Senior High School Grain Valley High School North Platte High School Great Falls Central Catholic High School Three Forks High School White Sulphur Springs High School STEM Early College At NC AT&T Litchville-Marion High School


Trinity Hall Watchung Hills Regional High School Packer Collegiate Institute Sar High School School Of The Holy Child Yeshivah Of Flatbush Joel Brav Loveland High School Otsego High School Yellow Springs/Mckinney High School Illinois Valley High School West Salem High School Bucks County Technical High School Shanksville-Stonycreek High School Faith Christian School Dakota Valley High School Evangelical Christian School Allen Homeschool Brighter Horizons Academy Corsicana High School Henderson High School Horizon High School - El Paso Klein Cain High School Poetry Community Christian School Snook Secondary Weiss High School Westwood High School Deep Run High School Milton Senior High School U-32 High School The Overlake School Toppenish High School


Advertise your speech and debate openings with us!

As a service to member schools, the National Speech & Debate Association offers complimentary employment listings on our website, www.speechanddebate.org/jobs. For $100, you may reserve a custom, third-page print ad in Rostrum magazine. We’ll even help you design your ad! Contact emily.kriegel@speechanddebate.org or call us at (920) 748-6206 to reserve your ad today. Our next issue will be published in mid-April!

LEARN MORE www.speechanddebate.org/jobs



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The American Legion Oratorical Contest

LOOKING FOR COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIPS?  LOOK NO FURTHER. As part of the National Speech & Debate Association’s ongoing partnership with The American Legion, the top three finishers from the Legion’s National Oratorical Contest may earn the right to compete in Original Oratory or United States Extemp at the National Speech & Debate Tournament! The first-place finisher is awarded an $18,000 scholarship, second-place $16,000, and third-place $14,000. The scholarships may be used at any college or university in the United States.

Want to get involved? Follow these simple steps! • Visit www.legion.org/oratorical to learn more.

Andrew Steinberg of Massachusetts placed first at the 2017 Oratorical Contest.

• Click “Request Information” or contact your state’s American Legion Department to learn when the first contest will be. • Also click on “Assigned Topics” to learn the extemporaneous topic areas. • Prepare your original oration on some aspect of the Constitution with emphasis on the duties and obligations of a citizen to our government.

Watch examples of past winning orations online at www.legion.org/oratorical/videos.



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