Pupils engage in a war of words

The smiles would make way for fierce debate for youngsters from across Lanarkshire.
The smiles would make way for fierce debate for youngsters from across Lanarkshire.

Uddingston Grammar and Our Lady’s High, Motherwell, faced off in the opening round of Scullion LAW’s 6th Annual Interschool’s Debating Cup.

At Scullion LAW’s office in Hamilton, Uddingston pupils Tomas Blair and Alice Gibson successfully argued for the motion ‘This house would require university students to work in their country of study for a number of years after graduation’ with Our Lady’s Patrick Quinn and Christopher Wilson making the case against.

Tomas and Alice will now go on to participate in the semi-final being held today (Wednesday) as they face Holy Cross High who defeated St John Ogilvie High in the opening round in a Hamilton derby.

Uddingston will argue for the motion ‘This house believes that democracy is the best system of government for every nation’.

The other semi-final sees Larkhall Academy against Strathaven Academy as the four schools vie for a place in the final which takes place in South Lanarkshire Council’s headquarters on Wednesday, November 25.

Paisley and Renfrewshire South MP Mhairi Black was invited to give pupils a few words of encouragement.

She said: “One of the most important parts of my job is debating. From debating the SNP MP’s stance in group meetings, through to debating the Government’s plans for this country in Westminster.

“Debate is one of the most important conventions we have in society today, and I am so glad the pupils are all eager to take part in it.”

The competition is supported every year by Karen and Fergus Loudon of Tunnocks, Uddingston.

Fergus said: “This competition is a great opportunity for the schools to develop their debating skills in front of an experienced panel of judges.”

Scullion LAW solicitor Emma Lawrie was judging alongside members of the Glasgow University Union Debating Club. She said: “All of the schools taking part should be very proud of themselves as the competition standard this year, was very high.”