EHS Speech and Debate Club

  • Coach -  Justin Hoy
    Office: (802) 871-0723

    Please use this link ( to sign up for the 2020-21 school year. 

    Debate Team Captains - Iris Hsiang and Justin Lee & Speech Captain - Fatima Khan.

    2020/2021 EHS Speech Team

    *Alex Katnelson - Extemp
    *Jack Austin - Extemp & Poetry
    **Fatima Khan - Original Oratory  & Poetry
    *Faith Awotho - Dramatic Interpretation & Impromptu
    *Jesse Roberts - Impromptu & Prose
    *Catherine Colley - Poetry & Prose
    *Tanisha Gerg - Impromptu & Prose
    Emmerson Stepleton - Original Oratory
    Justin Lee

    * State Finals Qualifier
    ** State Finals Finalist

    EHS Speech & Debate Logo

    There are two main areas to participate in. Forensics & Public Forum Debate.

    Public Forum Debate is an oral communication advocacy exercise done with a partner.  Each team of two advocate either in favor of (PRO) or against (CON) a resolution by proposing three to four arguments supporting their position.  With these arguments laid out in opening speeches, each side chooses the most important arguments to defend or attack. Using skills in cross-examination and the introduction of evidence, the debaters clarify, extend their own points,and expose weaknesses and/or contradictions in the opposition’s arguments.  Through a series of constructive and rebuttal speeches, the PRO and CON sides will, in thirty-five minutes, seek to persuade a citizen judge of the merits of their position. Past topics have included: Resolved: Commercial airline pilots should be armed in the cockpit; Resolved: The death penalty should be abolished in America;  Resolved: That Congress should repeal the No Child Left Behind Act.

    The forensics (public speaking) events include eight activities.  They are the interpretation of prose, poetry, drama and duo interpretation, extemporaneous and impromptu speaking, original oratory,  A tournament competition includes three rounds where students present to a judge who then awards a rank as well as points to each speaker which determines the top speakers in each category as well as the top teams.

    In prose, poetry and drama, the students select a piece from an established, published author to recite, generally about three to five minutes in length.  

    Impromptu Speaking requires the student to select a short, broad topic from everyday life and present a two to three minute speech after one minute of preparation.  

    Extemporaneous Speaking gives the student thirty minutes of preparation time to develop a five to seven minute speech on a topic of current national or international interest.  

    Original Oratory requires the student to write and memorize a six to eight minute persuasive speech directed at having the audience take action. Radio Announcing involves a three minute presentation of news, sports,weather and a thirty second student written commercial.

    Preliminary Tournament schedule

    11/6-Blue Mtn speech only

    11/7- BBA Novice Debate

    11/14-Woodstock both 

    12/5-CHS both

    12/19- SB both

    1/9-CVU both

    1/23-Montpelier both? or Mont debate/EHS speech

    1/29-Rutland speech only

    2/6- BHS debate only

    2/6-Speech states

    2/13-Hartford debate only

    3/13-Debate states

    *Tournaments: social distanced at EHS and virtual


    Public Forum Debate – 2020 November/December Topic Area: Non-Proliferation Efforts

    Resolved: The United States should adopt a declaratory nuclear policy of no first use.

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    Speech and Debate at Essex Chips: