Debating and Public Speaking

Ensuring our students speak with sophistication, clarity and dignity is a core value of our school.

The Debating and Public Speaking society meets weekly in Terms 1 and 2 and participates in a variety of inter and intra school events throughout the year. The society is run by the Debating Captain, a Year 12 or 13 student, who with the Head of English coaches the teams and prepares them for entry into competitions. St James enters the Oxford and Cambridge Union debating competitions and students attend workshops and ‘meets’. Debating also happens at school, with inter-house competitions and special Assembly debates on current topics happening during the year. St James also enters teams into Model United Nations competitions. Every November we hold an MUN in conjunction with the St James Senior Girls’ School which culminates in a formal dinner. And we also enter external MUN competitions. A recent success has been our students being awarded best speaker and commendations at the City of London MUN in March 2013.

Debating starts in the classroom, with all boys involved. They are taught the British Parliamentary rules of debating in English lessons from Year 8.