Middle School

The New York City Middle School Debate League is the largest middle school debate league in the nation.  We have also built several other local and regional parliamentary debate leagues. We offer the nation’s two largest debate formats of public forum debate and parliamentary debate. Each month we host a parliamentary and a public forum debate tournament.

2021-2 Middle School Tournament Dates

#1 October 23

Public Forum

Resolved: ACT & SAT scores should be eliminated as criteria for college admissions.

Parli topics

  • This House believes social media does more harm than good.
  • This House believes large cities are the best option for raising children.

#2 November 13

Public Forum

Resolved: ACT & SAT scores should be eliminated as criteria for college admissions.

#3 December 11

Public Forum: The United States Federal Government should raise the minimum wage to $15 for all workers in the United States

#4 January 8

Public Forum: The United States Federal Government should raise the minimum wage to $15 for all workers in the United States

#5 February 12 if live or online

Public Forum Topic 3

#6 March 12 (assuming live)

Public Forum Topic 3

#7 (States) April 1-3 (assuming live; 1-2 if online, 2-3 if live)

Topic chosen from league topics 1-3 based on coach vote.

Saturday Debate Tournaments

The New York City Middle School Debate League offers online middle school debate tournaments every month to league member schools.

There are 4 rounds of debate for each student.

where every student receives a participation certificate and their ballot/feedback from each round; and top debate teams, speakers, and schools are recognized. Additionally, our middle schools are welcome to compete in the high school division as well.

NYC Middle School Debate League – Public Forum and Parliamentary Debate Tournaments

Tentative Schedule

8:00am – 9:00am – Registration and Breakfast

9:00am – Registration Closes

10:00am – Round1

11:30am — Round 2

1:30 — Round 3

3pm — awards

Public Forum has added a 4th round, ending at approximately 5pm.

Public Forum Debate Division

Public Forum Debate is one of our newest debate formats and now one of our largest debate formats in the NYC Middle School Debate League.  Each month a topic is voted on by coaches across the country. Students devote a month to study, research and write on that topic.  The focus is more on persuading your audience – rather than the heavy evidence focus of policy debate.  Public Forum Debate is also unique in that it was founded to be easily accessible for the “public” so that any one can serve as a “citizen judge” and any student can be a debater. The National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA) Middle School National Championship includes the event of Public Forum Debate.

Parliamentary Debate/World Schools Debate

Parliamentary Debate is the largest and most popular debate format in the world as well as at the American collegiate level. Students learn more debate topics than any other debate format and unlike other debate formats – topics are determined by teachers and students.  Parliamentary emphasizes extemporaneous and impromptu debate skills with limited preparation times and having to “think on your feet.” The National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA) Middle School National Championship includes the event of World Schools.

Upcoming Tournaments

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