Debating is an exceptional exercise of the mind where students think about current events, discuss issues shaping our world, share ideas and meet new people. As a formal argument between two teams, debating provides students with the opportunity to improve their public speaking skills, practice making logical arguments and structure their thoughts, all while making new friends from their own school and others they compete against.
The College competes in the Independent Schools Debating Association (ISDA) on Friday nights throughout Terms 1 and 2. All students are welcome to try out for the ISDA squad. Brigidine also participates in friendly inter-school debating competitions in Terms 3 and 4. These competitions are open to all students.
The Law Society of New South Wales’ Mock Trial competition is open to schools across NSW for students in Years 10 and 11. The program aims to introduce students to the NSW judicial system by providing practical experience in the running of a court case in a true-to-life adversarial setting. Students learn advocacy, debating and problem solving skills. The competition also helps students to increase basic skills such as listening, speaking, writing, reading and analysing.
The Public Speaking program teaches confidence, persuasive speaking skills and raises awareness of global issues. It develops stage presence, voice control and leadership skills. It improves knowledge, critical thinking and creativity writing. The College enters a variety of public speaking competitions each year in which students from Years 7 to 12 have the chance to participate. These include Catholic Schools Debating Association Public Speaking, Rostrum “Voice of Youth”, Plain English Speaking Award, Legacy Junior Public Speaking Award, AHIGS Festival of Speech, Youth of the Year, and Zonta Young Women in Public Affairs Award.
Speech and Drama Classes
The Australian Speech Communication Association course is run by external providers and structured across Junior and Senior grades. The girls are assessed by their teacher and their starting grade determined according to their ability. There are eight Senior grades (S1 – S8) followed by higher order qualifications as the Certificate of Communication. At the end of each year, students will be examined by an external ASCA examiner.
Tournament of Minds
The Tournament of Minds is a problem solving program for teams of students in Years 7 – 10. Teams of seven students complete the challenges. Each team chooses a challenge from one of the following areas: STEM, The Arts, Language Literature and Social Sciences.
“Through participating in debating I have gained many valuable skills, from becoming a more confident speaker, to learning how to properly create an argument and eloquently present a case. I am so grateful to have joined the Debating Club. Through it, the friendships I have made and the skills I have gained are things I have taken with me through my time at Brigidine and will help me later in life.” Auria Nunes, Debating Captain 2019