High School claims the Lions’ debating trophy

November 02, 2017

Teacher Jaqui Johnson, James Hood, Adrian Mulham, Alex Poka, Shannon King, Bayden Thompson, Neil Buckley and Janet Thompson.

Deniliquin High School has extended its gap in the win:loss tally for the annual Deniliquin Lions Club versus High School debate.

After a win last Monday night against seasoned Lions debaters, the High School has now won 14 debates to the Lions’ 11.

This year’s high school team members were all new to the annual Lions debate, with the all-male team comprising first speaker James Hood, second speaker Shannon King and third speaker Bayden Thompson. Adrian Mulham was the team’s chairman and Alex Poka was the coach.

Guidance was provided to the team by teacher Jacqui Johnson.

The young men went went head-to-head with the Lions Club on the topic ‘That the Roads and Maritime Services should replace paper logbooks with electronic logbooks’.

Arguing the affirmative, Lions Janet Mathewson, Colin Dowell and Neil Buckley failed to convince adjudicator and local accountant Brian McCleary.

Miss Johnson said arguing against technology was difficult for the high school team, but she said their research and well reasoned arguments paid off.

‘‘The boys were arguing about logbooks specifically for learner drivers, and argued that in rural areas blackspots and data issues were an issue. They also spoke about the impact of viruses,’’ she said.

‘‘The Lions took the debate topic to be about logbooks in trucks, so there were two very different arguments going on.

‘‘The boys were all part of the Year 8 debating team this year, and only one of them had previous debating experience.

‘‘They spent a few lunchtimes over the last few weeks preparing, and it was great for them to experience debating against the Lions.’’

Chairing the meeting, Lion Daryl Whateley said he felt the debate was one of the best he has witnessed.

‘‘It was very close and both teams performed well. The young lads did an excellent job and it was a deserved win,’’ he said.

As winners, the school’s debating team was given a $500 donation from the Deniliquin Lions Club.

The annual debate was instigated by late Lion Jack Baker, who came up with the concept 40 years ago.

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