QE debating team in national final

QE debaters overcame strong opposition in the regional round of a prestigious competition to qualify for the national final.

The team, comprising ten Year 12 boys, had to work together to prepare for and then debate a number of topics based on current affairs in the European Union.

The only other team to qualify from the South East Regional Forum of the European Youth Parliament (EYP) UK competition was from St Paul’s School.

The topics ranged from Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and the Syrian refugee crisis to renewable and secure energy in the light of the Ukraine crisis. The event was staged in the European Commission’s Office in Westminster. The London Office co-ordinates the European Commission's activities in the UK and takes specific responsibility for England.

“The boys enjoyed the experience and did very well,” said History teacher Kwamina Korsah, who oversaw the team’s participation in the event. “The competition provides an invaluable opportunity for our boys to engage with fellow delegates from a range of backgrounds. It also allows them to write resolutions on European affairs and to develop their teamwork.”

""Overall, 14 teams have qualified for the EYP national final from across the different regions. The final has been split into two sessions and the QE team has been invited to take part in the one taking place at Liverpool Hope University over the first weekend in July.

“I think the reason we succeeded was the emphasis we placed on teamwork throughout,” said team member Sahil Handa. “Each member had skills ranging from public speaking to topic-specific knowledge. We were able to use these to maximum effect by encouraging each other and working together; something noted by the judges.”

“Contributing to the heated debates was hugely exciting, and co-operating as a team enabled us to make clear and concise points,” said Sahil’s fellow team member Norbert Sobolak. “The next round will be even more challenging, but we’re looking forward to it.”     

The successful UK finalists will then go on to the International Session which will take place in Dublin next year.

Besides Sahil and Norbert, the QE team comprised Ali Humayun, Calum Johnson, Jun Ming Shik, Raj Singh, Pranesh Varadarajan, Jason Yau and Ryun Pang.