Debate“It is better to debate a question without settling it than to settle a question without debating it.”
- Joseph Joubert
Rowland Hall believes in the value of debate because we know it is an essential element of an educated, productive, and ethical community. Debate fosters critical thinking and communication skills for the 21st century while providing students with the forum to nurture their sense of advocacy. While debate intentionally appears across the curriculum, it is our competitive team that distinguishes Rowland Hall as the strongest debate program in the Intermountain West. In fact, in 2010 Rowland Hall was officially recognized as a “School of Excellence” by the National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA) and is consistently ranked in the top 10% of schools nationwide for member degrees. Our expert leadership helps: in 2017, NSDA named coach Mike Shackelford Utah's Educator of the Year—read our December 2017 news story.
Read more about our debate team in a November 2016 Fine Print story republished from the 2015-2016 Annual Report.
Rowland Hall Debate History
Rowland Hall debate teams have been leaders since 1985. View a historical timeline of debate at Rowland Hall.
|Upper School TEAM||MIDDLE SCHOOL TEAM|
|The high school team is made up of approximately 50 debaters who participate in a variety of events (CX, LD, or PF) and divisions (Varsity or Novice). Students also determine their own commitment level and goals. Our most competitive students attend 10 to 12 tournaments a year and can travel all over the country, from Los Angeles to Boston. Others stay committed to regional or local performances, but everyone is committed to personal excellence. In just the last five years, the program has produced seven State Champions, 19 National Qualifiers, and 14 Academic All-Americans, and has sent dozens of students to college on scholarships.||Speech and debate is an essential part of the middle school. Required in the sixth grade as part of the “Foundations” curriculum, students develop strong communication, argumentation, and advocacy skills. Students have additional elective options to explore debate in the seventh and eighth grade in competitive and non-competitive environments. Students who officially join the team will have four to five tournament opportunities in the third trimester. Rowland Hall consistently earns awards throughout the season and has won the State Championship twice in the last five years!|
College Matriculations for RH Debaters
Meet the Coach
-Board Member of the NDCA
-Chair of the GSL Nationals District
-Fmr. President of Utah Debate Coaches Association