NDA Launches Elementary School Debate a Month Early!


Published 11/03/16

On October 22nd, The Newark Debate Academy hosted the first Elementary-Middle School debate tournament of the 2016-2017 academic year. The tournament was held at East Side High School and featured nearly 300 students from across the city of Newark, grades 4 to 8, to debate the issues of climate change cooperation with the People’s Republic of China.

The tournament offered 3 divisions of debate: beginner, experience and advanced. As the opening tournament for the Newark Debate Academy, the EMS program is a strong representation of the strength, potential, and motivation for debate success and participation in the greater Newark area with the youngest and most brilliant minds affirming the motto “I am a Newark Debater.” This only foreshadows a great year for Newark Debate.

The EMS debate season usually starts 2 weeks into November and follows a high school tournament. This year proved to be a challenge for all of us, as teachers worked relentlessly to prepare students for competition on October 22nd, which was about two weeks earlier than expected. Given that the topic and topic research is so intense, it is imperative that we work to provide our students with comprehension and comfort with something as serious as international cooperation. NDA staff made visits to multiple schools working with students and teachers to help develop speeches affirming and negating climate change cooperation with China. The visits were also meant to provide newer and developing debaters with a firm grasp and understanding of debate fundamentals. With constant communications, NDA admin and teachers worked diligently to provide the young students in Newark with a community and the tools to find their voice as great debaters and leaders.

Park Elementary school debaters Jordan Ambroise and Lilian Sanchez were the 1st place beginner team out of 73 other Partnerships, Lilian was also awarded as 1st place speaker out of 142. Wilson Avenue’s lone Maverick debater Jardel Paisante was named 1st place experieneced team out of 25. Science Park’s Azeez Richardson was awarded top speaker in the experienced division. Mount Vernon’s Wonu Fasasi and Binuki Thiruchelvam would receive top honors overall 1st place in the advanced division, which features Newark’s most experienced and talented intellects in Newark. Wonu was also the was 1st place speaker.


The following schools competed:

Bergen County Debate Club

Chancellor Avenue School

Ivy Hill Elementary


Luis Munoz Marin

McKinley Elementary School

Mount Vernon School

Science Park High School

Oliver St. School

Park Elementary School

Rafael Hernandez School

Ridge Street School

Robert Treat Academy

Speedway Academies

University High School

Wilson Avenue School

Full Results can be found at: