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Debate, it's a life skill. 

Lone Star uses debate to prepare students for competition, but more importantly for life. Building skills for life, to learn research skills, respectful argumentation, refutation, organization and most importantly, good communication and speaking skills. We want our students to be able to think critically and communicate effectively about all issues. 

Forms of Debate

Our debate students compete at tournaments in one of the following forms of debate. Preparation and coaching under league-specific debate resolutions for competitive tournaments are:

Team Policy (TP) in the Stoa league

- TP Debate advocates a change in policy. Debate teams are made up of two students. 

- TP helps use the fundamentals of public-speaking within a concrete framework of problem-solution-benefits. Students will build on their research, organization, analysis, refutation and persuasive speaking skills. 

Lone Star CC Partnership policy:  It is ideal that partners be chosen from within Lone Star. Families are encouraged to wait until after the first practice tournament before finalizing partnerships as this will avoid many difficulties. Partners who share the same goals and commitment levels will be successful. Partnership commitment is for one year, including the Regional and National tournament should the team qualify.  

Lincoln Douglas (LD) in the Stoa and/or NCFCA leagues (and only for experienced LD debaters)

- LD Value Debate centers on a proposition of values. Debates are one-on-one.

- LD is a more abstract, philosophical form of debate and is therefore geared toward experienced high school debaters who enjoy political theory, philosophy and history.

TP and LD debaters may also compete in:

Parliamentary Debate (Parli) in the Stoa league

- Parli will help sharpen ones skills. Resolutions are announced / released prior to the beginning of each round. debate teams made up of two students.

- This is an extemporaneous form of debate. It will asks competitors to develop and defend positions on a wide range of issues that could be fact, value, policy or scenario in nature.

** PRE-DEBATE **  (not offered in 2018/2019)

Lone Star's PRE-DEBATE track is for students who are ages 13 to 15, are a novice and will have more than one year eligibility to compete. Pre-Debate will focus on some of the foundations of debate, such as:

  • Logic

  • The Constitution

  • storyboarding

  • the five canons of rhetoric

  • critical thinking

  • outlining/writing 

  • argument classification.


Students will write and defend arguments with each other as they acquire the fundamentals of debate. If you want, you can use Pre-Debate for school credit in logic or composition. These students will not be required to compete in debate, but will have plenty of opportunity within club to practice the skills they are developing.

Why did we create Pre-Debate? Debate is HARD! Here is a HUGE list of DEBATE SKILLS. A student needs to know the Constitution, philosophy, logic, how to research, access to and use of a computer, knowledge of current events, and public speaking as they prepare to discover and write their own materials to debate for an hour and fifteen minutes at a time in an extended back-and-forth versus students up to Seniors in high school. One should not “just start” that and hope to acquire all those skills. Discernment of a student being in Pre-Debate will be decided between the coach, parent and student. Watch this VIDEO on youngsters debating.  

At What Age Should One Start Debate?

Suggested resources:

Ethos Debate

NCFCA Debate

Stoa Debate

Benefits of Debate

  • All the speech skills PLUS...

  • History (world and U.S.)

  • Civics

  • Economics

  • Philosophy

  • Worldview 

  • Logic

  • Listening skills 

  • Organization skills 

  • Research skills

  • Persuasive skills

  • Analysis skills 

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