Team England have just returned form the World Schools Debating Championships in South Africa. Each year the ESU select, support and train the team and we are, as ever, extremely proud of how well they have performed.
All of the team members performed exceptionally in the face of what is generally agreed to have been one of the hardest sets of motions ever used at the competition. Over the four days of preliminary rounds the team won six of their eight debates and secured universal praise form the various judges and coaches who met them. They then went on to win their octo- and quarter-finals, being narrowly beaten in their semi-final proposing a 100% inheritance tax. In no small part their success was build upon the solid foundation of the hard work they did in preparation for the competition.
The team was coached by Lewis Iwu, himself a former member of the England team in 2004 and 2005, when he was ranked 2nd best speaker in the world. The coaching role is voluntary, and the ESU would like to express its gratitude for the considerable amount of time and effort which Lewis put in. He was also helped by a range of former team members, coaches and members of the World Schools Committee who between them make up one of the most formidable coaching and training teams in the world.
A full report from the Team Manager, ESU's Head of Speech and Debate Jason Vit, will follow shortly.