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The student news site of Colonia High School

The Declaration

The student news site of Colonia High School

The Declaration


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Speech and Debate Club is back at Colonia High School

Photo Credit: The Declaration Staff
During a state-wide debate competition, Colonia’s Patriots pose for a quick picture during break time.

The Speech and Debate Club is roaring through the halls at Colonia High School once again, after a dry year of participation during the 2017-2018 school year.

Lack of participation puts an end to the club

The debate club at Colonia High School was a famous club ever since it was founded by students who were interested in debating, and their history teacher, Mr. Williams. The club had many members in it for about three years, including students from all grade levels. However, as the seniors graduated each year, fewer and fewer students participated in the club. Due to a miniscule amount of people showing up to the meetings, the club was officially closed during the 2017-2018 school year.

Bringing the club back

As the 2018-2019 school year started, student Atif Warraich met with the respected advisor, Mr. Williams, and requested bringing the club back. That would, of course, be based on if enough students take part in the club. Mr. Williams agreed to give the club another chance and decided to host the first meeting in over a year.

A great turnout

Fortunately, many students showed up and showed their interest in debating. Ever since, the team meets regularly every two weeks after school. They have already held two practice debate sessions during their meetings, and are committed to practicing and working hard to compete for an upcoming competition in April or May.

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During the debates, the students split up into two teams and converse on the given topic. For example, the first debate was about the border wall situation at America’s southern border. The students were split into two teams and were allowed to practice their debates at home, ahead of time. During the meeting, they debated in a well manner, and the back and forth discussion lasted about 30-40 minutes.

The second debate was about whether churches have the right to be tax exempt. Once again, students were split up into two teams by Mr. Williams and were given their side beforehand. They were allowed to research at home and prepare themselves for the debate. This debate also went very well. During March, the members will debate in the “Public Forum” format, which is one of the two forms which are used at debate competitions.

A Hopeful Future

Overall, it is safe to say that the club is back at Colonia High School. During the next school year, the students are planning to go to some big competitions in the state. Also, the students are confident that they will get more students to join the club once the next school year starts.

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About the Contributor
Atif Warraich
Atif Warraich, Reporter
Atif Warraich is a sixteen-year-old junior at Colonia High School. He is from the village Marūfābād, Pakistan, and moved to the United States in 2009. In the U.S, Warraich lived in Brooklyn, NY, for his first three and a half years, and then moved to Avenel, NJ, in 2012. Warraich lives with his mother, father, a fourteen-year-old brother, and a seven-year-old sister. In his free time, he loves to read, listen to music, and watch television. He is a voracious reader and loves to write. He has been an author for The Declaration since September of 2018. Warraich enjoys spending time with family and friends, playing and watching sports, and traveling. In school, Warraich is an active member of Juggernauts, Student Council, Debate Club, Ecology Club, and Multicultural Club. He fluently speaks four languages, including English, Urdu, Punjabi, and Hindi, and is learning Spanish. Warraich’s love for sports is endless.

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Speech and Debate Club is back at Colonia High School