Yesterday was a good afternoon. After several weeks from the original start of the project, two of my best students wrapped up our LD debates with a final debate in front of a panel of judges. It wasn’t without its drama leading up to the day though. First thing, I set days to work with each of them on their debating. I work with the first one, and then the next day I receive a notice that the other debater will be out sick for the rest of the week. Not cool. It gives me pause to wonder if she’ll be ready for the debate the next week. So what do I do? I spend time checking with other students in class that could do good with the debate just in case there needs to be a replacement.
So, that student is back the next week and I work with her on Monday during my conference period. Then two days later she’s in in-school suspension. Shit!!!
So Thursday comes around. My without-a-doubt student hasn’t quite prepared her case as we had talked about and my ISS debater had done nothing. I’m not feeling too well at this point.
So I’m waiting for the judging panel to show up. They were from the high school debate team. I didn’t know until affter they showed up that they had been at a competition the next town over. So they showed up late. It was the team coach, their only LD debater left, and one of their freshman CX debaters that had been my newspaper editor last year.
The debate went better than I anticipated. Despite the cases not being up to snuff like I was hoping they would have, my coaching I gave both girls about handling themselves during cross examination and rebuttals seemed to pay off…at some level. The vote was a split decision in the manner I expected it to go. My ISS debater received the vote from the debate coach. The other debater received the other two votes. So now they both have received a scholarship to a summer speech and debate camp at a nearby college, with the winner getting a full scholarship.