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Knightsbridge School Debating & Interview Club - 16th May

This was another excellent session with our Knightsbridge School Debating & Interview Club. 

Our skill focus this week looked at Active Listening - and how best to engage with other speeches and points - with rebuttal and constructive supporting arguments. Well done all for then applying this important skill throughout the session. 

For our warm up we then turned to our interview style philosophical question with an emphasis on 'why'/justification?:

'Is sport more important than music?'

Here arguments centred on health, both physical and mental, and encouraging different skills as well as teamwork. The old motto came to mind: mens sana in corpore sano. The majority voted for sport but many sought a middle ground that wanted a balance of both in education. It was also felt that opportunity in both sport and music should be more widespread across the UK and more integrated into the curriculum. 

Our newsround saw reference to Eurovision, the Northern Lights, the conflict in the Middle East, a new FM for Scotland, a ban for a Covid vaccine, and sporting success across football. 

Our main debate looked at the current discussion in Westminster politics (and nationally) on school absence linked to illness (in addition to the same workplace debate).

We asked in our motion, 'Should this House increase the fine in September from £60 to £80?'

The majority voted against the motion (at both tellings) on the basis that the plan would make little difference (and in many instances families had legitimate and important reasons for absence), but there was a unanimous view that more needed to be done to understand why children are missing school for days on end (without a reason) and that greater care and attention would be needed there, rather than a straightforward fine. More discussion/conversation was also sought between the family and the school before getting to a fine. It was a nuanced debate with tremendous maturity shown across the floor. 

At the end of the session we also asked:

'Should this House have more organic farming?'

Here the group divided between those keen on more sustainable, ecological farming, against those in favour of greater food supply and cheaper food, given a cost of living crisis and inflation. 

An excellent session. 

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