In a country that is founded on political democracy as a staple of representation, the centralization of a policy debate league would help students to make well-informed decisions about current politics that would help influence issues like healthcare, education, and other social factors. In Hillsborough County, there was only about a 32% voter turnout for the 2020 Presidential Preference Primary Election. The lack of political action taken by residents stems from absence of awareness about important topics that we believe policy debate would help students discover. Beyond democratic engagement, the Tampa Debate League will utilize other theoretical backgrounds that appeal to students such as philosophy, ethics, and reason as the basis for interaction. Thus, even if politics may not be the student’s enjoyment, the Tampa Debate League will provide a creative outlet for everyone. This will help open the possibilities for civil engagement that can enrich an individual’s life, no matter their status.
Moreover, policy debate helps to kindle a sense of confidence in a student. The ability to project one’s ideas and beliefs without doubt is a paramount life skill that is needed in the modern job market. Our program has set out to create different activities that entice kids to speak and engage more with both the people and world around them. We hope that by developing a competitive space for students to converse about a variety of questions, there will be an incentive for students to take a definitive stance based on their personal beliefs. No experience is necessary for the Tampa Debate League! Students from all throughout the Tampa Bay area will be unified by the common goals of confidence building, political awareness, and other portable skills. Students can be in either middle school or high school in order to enroll in this program.