Participating in debates and debating competitions has been a long running tradition in Cross and Passion College. Although the current Debating Society has only recently been reinstated by Mrs.Hughes along with Mrs.McCann, they have achieved great success in this short period of time; including a victory in the regional finals in the “Debating Matters” competition. The successful team included Luíseach Mathers, Orla Donnelly, Sorcha Hughes and Conleth Burns. The group now gets to travel to Glasgow in the new year to continue their participation in the events. The Debating Society partake in other competitions, such as the “Concern Debates”, in which Cross and Passion recently recorded a victory on the 22nd of October against Coleraine Grammar on the motion “The EU can well afford to open their borders to refugees” in which Cross and Passion were opposed to the motion. The team of Sorcha Hughes, Róisín Neill, Bronagh Scullion and Conleth Burns delivered a 2 – 1 victory against their Coleraine rivals.
The debates are a great opportunity to promote literacy within the school and the recent ETI inspection of the school commended the work of the Debating Society in this regard. The tensions that arise during a debate mean that those competing must be able to keep a level head and think clearly under pressure. The members must be able to communicate their arguments, shut down their opponents and time manage their speeches effectively – not an easy task. The team has many upcoming challenges to face; on November 11th they are up against De La Salle, Belfast. This will be followed by debates against St.Mary’s, Magherafelt and St.Louis’, Ballymena.
The current members of the Debating Society are preserving a winning tradition also. In 1986 the Senior Debating Team at Cross and Passion were All-Ireland Champions – a team which featured current Senior teacher Mrs Noleene Magee. It certainly looks like a return to the glory days of debating at CPC is taking place.
The team members are pictured below with Mrs Hughes.