The Westminster debate team was started in 1987 by Dr. John Bartlett (Interim Headmaster). Through the years, it has offered Westminster students the opportunity to develop their skills in critical thinking, research, and argumentation. Our hope is that the students will put these skills to use to create a strong foundation for their Christian faith. Debate is offered as an elective course in the fall semester. The following information provides a snapshot of what Westminster’s program entails. The current debate coach is Craig Johnson.
Public Forum Debate
Westminster participates in Public Forum debate, which focuses on topics (resolutions) of national importance. The format includes short speeches and emphasizes the “crossfire” questioning components. Resolutions change each month. Each two-person debate team should communicate in a manner persuasive to the non-specialist or citizen judge. Debaters should display solid logic, lucid reasoning, and depth of analysis; utilize evidence without being driven by it; present a clash of ideas by countering/refuting arguments of the opposing team (rebuttal); and communicate ideas with clarity, organization, eloquence and professional decorum.