2017 Schools' Competition Topics

Year 5

All debates are Prepared Debates. Speeches of 3 minutes; warning bell at 2 minutes.

Round 1: That cats are better than dogs.
Round 2: That trampolines are a good exercise for children.
Round 3: That Australian students should clean their classrooms like Japanese children. (see video link)
Round 4: That we should change our state emblem.
Round 5: That planes are better than trains.

Year 6/7

All debates are Prepared Debates. Speeches of 3 minutes; warning bell at 2 minutes.

Round 1: That bottle flipping is a harmless craze.
Round 2: That the ants should give food to the grasshopper (see link).
Round 3: That we should give homework the heave-ho.
Round 4: That being left home alone at 10 years is too young.
Round 5: That the ban is a good idea (see link).

Year 8

All debates are Prepared Debates. Speeches of 4 minutes; warning bell at 3 minutes.

Round 1: That we should increase fines for truancy. (see link)
Round 2: That the council should change the signs. (see link)
Round 3: That humans could survive a Zombie war.
Round 4: That parking spaces for prams is unnecessary.
Round 5: That the children should be allowed to smoke. (see link)

Quarter Final: That the Royal Adelaide Show has lost its wonder.
Semi Final: That children should be allowed to roll down the hill. (see link)
Grand Final: That cyber-bullying should be the responsibility of the school.

Year 9

Rounds 1 to 4 are Prepared Debates.
Speeches of 5 minutes; warning bell at 4 minutes.


Round 1: That doctors, nurses or midwives who promote antivax messages should be prosecuted.
Round 2: That Hogwarts is an ideal school.
Round 3: That driverless cars are a "wheely" bad idea.
Round 4: That there should be more international support to stop Japan's whaling program
Round 5: That students should never be forced to repeat a year at school.
One Card Debate. View guidelines here Speeches of 5 minutes; warning bell at 4 minutes.

Quarter Final: That free range and organic eggs aren't all they're cracked up to be.
Semi Final: That Fathers' Day should be renamed "Special Person's Day".
Grand Final: That we need "free-range parenting" in Australia.

Year 10

Rounds 1 to 3 are Prepared Debates. Speeches of 6 minutes; warning bell at 5 minutes.

Round 1: That the development of artificial intelligence is an unacceptable risk to humanity.
Round 2: That Bob Dylan should not have been awarded the Nobel Prize for literature.
Round 3: That the bakers should bake the cake for gays (see link)
Round 4: That the Margaret Court Arena should be renamed.
One Card Debate. View guidelines here Speeches of 6 minutes; warning bell at 5 minutes.

Round 5: Short Preparation Debate.
The Short Preparation Topic will be released 90 minutes before the scheduled debate. View guidelines here
Speeches of 5 minutes; warning bell at 4 minutes.

Quarter Final: That you cannot legislate against fake news.
Prepared Debate. Speeches of 6 minutes; warning bell at 5 minutes.

Semi Final: That Centrelink recipients on Newstart and Youth Allowance should be randomly drug tested.
Prepared Debate. Speeches of 6 minutes; warning bell at 5 minutes.

Grand Final: That the clergy should report child sexual abuse revealed during a confession.
Prepared Debate. Speeches of 6 minutes; warning bell at 5 minutes.

Senior


Round 1: That the Human Rights Commission should not have prosecuted Bill Leak.
Prepared Debate. Speeches of 8 minutes; warning bell at 7 minutes.

Round 2: That the United Nations should be abolished.
One card debate. View guidelines here Speeches of 8 minutes; warning bell at 7 minutes.

Round 3: That diversity undermines social cohesion.
Prepared Debate. Speeches of 8 minutes; warning bell at 7 minutes.

Round 4: Short Preparation Debate.
The Short Preparation Topic will be released 90 minutes before the scheduled debate. View guidelines here
Speeches of 6 minutes; warning bell at 5 minutes.

Quarter Final: That the burka/niqab should be banned in Australia.
Prepared debate. Speeches of 8 minutes; warning bell at 7 minutes.

Semi Final: That the Captain Cook statue in Sydney's Hyde Park should be removed.
Prepared debate. Speeches of 8 minutes; warning bell at 7 minutes.

Grand Final: That the parents of Charles Gard should have had the right to choose for their child.
Prepared debate. Speeches of 8 minutes; warning bell at 7 minutes.

Open


Grand Final: That section 44 of the Australian Constitution needs revision.
Prepared debate. Speeches of 8 minutes; warning bell at 7 minutes.

Special Formats of Prepared Debates

Quodlibetical Topic

There are a number of issues that can’t be easily expressed in a one-line topic. Therefore you have been given a fictitious scenario, outlined by a few paragraphs, and a topic that is based on this scenario. The following should be noted:

1. The first speaker should not attempt to define the topic word for word, but rather should define the issue(s) or dilemma(s) that the topic presents.

2. It is this issue or dilemma that should be debated in an attempt to prove whichever side of the topic, i.e. feel free to debate the particular issue generally, but be sure to link it back to the topic as this is what you want to argue for or against.

3. There is no need for the first speaker to read out the initial paragraphs as the Chairman will do this before announcing the topic, however, any speaker may refer to these paragraphs as part of his/her argument.

4. Debaters are welcome and are encouraged to conduct further research on the issues presented but note that the scenario itself is often fictitious.