Students from Fortrose Academy on Black Isle crowned Scotland's top young debate team at Holyrood showdown amid stiff competition
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Pupils from a Highland school have been crowned Scotland’s top young debate team.
Fortrose Academy students took the winning spot at the grand final of this year’s Donald Dewar Memorial Debating Tournament.
Proving no one should argue with them were Aimee Ross and Orla McMichael.
The pair defeated three other schools at the event in debating chamber of the Scottish Parliament.
They won on the topic of the emergence of ‘cancel culture’.
Jenna Padget and Jennifer Chen from the High School of Glasgow came second.
The tournament is Scotland’s largest annual schools debating tournament and is open to pupils in all Scottish secondary schools.
Organised and run by the Law Society of Scotland, the tournament is dedicated to the memory of the former First Minister Donald Dewar MSP, who died in 2000.
Law Society of Scotland Vice President Sheila Webster said: “I’d like to congratulate all eight pupils from the four schools that made it to the final, but especially to the winning team of Fortrose Academy. You should all be proud of what you’ve learned and achieved.
“The judges had a hard time picking a winning team and runners-up, with the skills displayed by all teams worthy of the Scottish Parliament. I was impressed to see the teams developing and then presenting strong arguments while under tight time pressure.
“It was brilliant to be back in such an impressive venue after a difficult few years. I’d like to thank the Scottish Parliament for hosting and also the Deputy Presiding Officer, Liam McArthur, the judges and sponsors for their continued support.”
Fortrose Academy, will receive £1000 for their school and all finalists got a commemorative quaich.
Both schools will receive educational books to the value of £500, provided by tournament sponsors Hodder Gibson Publishing.
There was also a floor debate for school pupils in the audience who had competed in previous rounds.
The floor prize winners were Innes Morgan from Thurso High School in Caithness and Ruairidh Williams from the Royal High School, Edinburgh.
They each each received a £50 book voucher.
Deputy Presiding Officer Liam McArthur MSP said: “I’m so pleased to once again welcome some of Scotland’s young people to the Parliament’s Debating Chamber for the culmination of this national competition. I’ve been so impressed by the quality of debate that we’ve heard.
“I send my best wishes to all the pupils who worked so hard to make the final of this competition. It was very closely fought but congratulations to Fortrose Academy for being awarded the overall prize.”