Online Debate Nationals

Online Debate Nationals

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Adrianna Valente started this petition to NSDA and

We believe that there should be a middle school division for the 2020 NSDA Online National Debate Tournament. While we may be young, our dedication should not be underestimated. Many of us have sacrificed our social development in order to prioritize debate. We’ve worked incredibly hard to be able to go to nationals and unfortunately its been canceled- which is understandable. However, taking into consideration our current circumstances, it’s also incredibly important us students know how to use our voices; which is what Speech and Debate is for. We should be given the ability to participate in the 2020 Online National Tournament, that many of us have worked incredibly hard for. We’ve had the 3 AM late nights, we’ve been stressed, we’ve skipped hanging out with friends and dedicated our year to speech and debate. We deserve the chance to be recognized for it.

Giving young students the opportunity to participate in the 2020 Online Speech and Debate Tournament would have many benefits for both the students participating and the National Speech and Debate Association. Tournaments give us the ability to emphasize our voices and it makes us feel as if we were important, despite our age. Participating in a national tournament would give us the opportunity to go up against incredible debaters, allow us to learn from them, and better our speech and debate skills. Starting debate off at a young age shapes the leaders of the future and benefits future generations as well. Debate teaches us how to persuade  others with different viewpoints, how to present arguments clearly, and how to connect with an audience. All of these are things that form a great leader. In fact, 60% of our congressional representatives are ex debaters. Not only would allowing us to participate in this online tournament benefit us students- it could also potentially benefit the organization. By allowing more students to participate in the tournament, more funds would be going towards the organization. Since each student has to pay a $75 main event entry fee, with just 160 entries NSDA could get $12,000. 

In summation, we’ve worked incredibly hard throughout the whole year. We plead for your support and hope we’re given the opportunity to participate in NSDAs Online National Tournament under a Middle School division.

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