On Wednesday 20th March 2013 the French Department at Mill Hill School hosted its first inter-schools debating competition. Schools came from far and wide to take part in this inaugural event that we intend to keep going for quite some time. Our pupils had to debate some very complex ideas in French and faced some very stiff competition indeed. Our two pairs were Naomi Kendal and Thomas Levy as well as Omar Ahmed and Nikita Anosov. Whilst neither pair reached the semi-final, it is certainly worth noting their triumphant effort in the face of some very stiff competition. In the initial stages of the debate, our pupils had to debate France’s ecological policy in relation to the TGV and nuclear energy, the legalisation of Euthanasia as well as the EU being the scapegoat for the problems that we face in contemporary society. It was a marvellous opportunity for our students to use their linguistic capability in such manner and was testament to their commitment and academic rigour. The semi-final motion was about affording equal rights to homosexual couples whilst a very tense final between City of London Boys’ School and Haberdasher’s Boys’ School centred itself on the motion that London is no longer a symbol of or for Great Britain. The boys in the final were superb ambassadors for their schools and the quality of their arguments in combination with the quality of their French, made it a pleasure to watch. Finally, I would like to thank the pupils and staff that attended the event and I think it was an excellent venture.
Chris Lowe, Head of French