Three Tequesta Trace Students Compete at National Debate Tournament

Members of the Speech and Debate Team at Tequesta Trace Middle School are anxiously awaiting the start of the school year. They are hoping for another successful debate season, once again sending a team to the National Speech and Debate Association’s National Tournament. The school had three students compete at Nationals this past summer in Dallas; Martha Dwyer in Congressional Debate and Nicholas Foutch and Gabriel Simpson in Policy Debate. 

“The students from the Tequesta Trace Debate Team traveled out of state for the first time in the school’s history to attend the NSDA’s National Tournament with eight other middle schools from Broward County,” states Speech and Debate Coach Lindsay Levine. 

She says the school’s team is small but growing and it is quite accomplished, having competed at Nationals twice. 

Nicholas and Gabriel competed as partners in Policy Debate, winning two rounds at the tournament. Ms. Levine explains that Policy Debate is a two-on-two style debate where students research and debate a specific topic, dealing with U.S. Policy, for the entire year. Nicholas and Gabriel had competed together since January and won four medals from Broward’s MAST tournaments, before qualifying for Nationals. 

Martha competed in Congressional Debate. Ms. Levine describes this form of debate as a mock legislature where students draft bills and resolutions, which they then debate before voting to pass into law.

“At Nationals, Martha participated in the mock Congress with a docket of student-written bills, including two she wrote herself,” shared Ms. Levine. 

She says she is extremely proud of her students and their accomplishments and hopes they will take this experience with them and consider pursuing debate in high school this coming year. “All three students had a great time meeting and competing against other students who are passionate about Speech and Debate from all over the country.”

In addition to competing in the National Speech and Debate Association’s National Tournament, Ms. Levine says the students were able to watch the final rounds of the high school events and had the unique opportunity to tour Dallas. They viewed Dallas from the top of Reunion Tower, visited AT&T Stadium (home of the Dallas Cowboys), toured the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza (it chronicles the assassination of President John F. Kennedy), and visited the Perot Museum of Nature and Science.