Home County News Speech and debate at McNicol Middle teaches valuable life skills

Speech and debate at McNicol Middle teaches valuable life skills

Keyala O’Neal loves to participate in debate competitions and is excelling in speech and debate at McNicol Middle School.

Janell McLeod is the speech and debate teacher at McNicol Middle School.

“It’s fun to go to competitions and to meet new friends. I have fun and I am learning real life skills in debate,” O’Neal said.

Tyran McGinley also loves being in the debate program. “It gives me a chance to express myself and to learn how to use words effectively. I have learned to see different sides of an issue,” he said.

Abigail Rojas said, “I love to make speeches and I can give speeches here.”

Arnold McNeal said he too enjoys giving impromptu speeches.

They are all students in the speech and debate program at McNicol Middle School, which is taught by Janell McLeod. Some of the students in the class participate in monthly competitions against teams from other schools. It is part of a large initiative by the Broward Schools Superintendent to offer debate to every public school, including those in middle and elementary school. So far, all the middle and high schools have speech and debate, as well as 31 elementary schools.

Students in the middle of a debate presentation at McNicol Middle School.

McLeod says she loves teaching speech and debate and runs the class with enthusiasm. Recently she had students pick topics from a bowl and develop arguments for or against a topic. The students enjoyed debating topics such as, Should be vegetarians? And, Should students be required to wear uniforms? The students gave their speeches with enthusiasm.

“The students are learning to how give speeches and learning how to debate. These are important life skills,” said McLeod.

The competitions feature various categories, such as declamation, original oratory, public forum, policy debate and other activities. As a result of the school district’s emphasis on speech and debate, more students are getting involved.

McNicol Middle School principal Melissa Gurreonero is pleased with the debate program. “We started debate last year and many students have become involved. I love this program and I believe it teaches valuable life skills to students,” she said.

David Volz
David Volz
David Volz has been a reporter for Hollywood Gazette since 2011 and has worked for numerous community news publications throughout South Florida over the past two decades including the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Miami Herald and South Florida Business Journal. He is a Professor in the Business department at Broward College and the editor of the Coral Springs Connection, an online community news website. He covers city government, schools, sports events, cultural activities, faith groups and workplaces.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Must Read

The North Runway at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport is Closed for Repairs

The north runway at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport is closed to aircraft traffic over the next four months as it undergoes significant rehabilitation. A presentation...

Hollywood Commission Issues Proclamation for Gun Violence Awareness Day

The Hollywood Commission issued a proclamation in recognition of the 5th National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 7, 2019. Members from Moms Demand...

Hollywood Commission Approves Major Infrastructure Projects

The Hollywood Commission approved some major contracts involving infrastructure. It agreed to a resolution contracting Southeastern Engineering Contractors, Inc. for construction services related to sanitary...

Sidelines Sports Bar II in Downtown Hollywood Scores Touchdown with Patrons

Sidelines Sports Bar II, a new establishment in Downtown Hollywood, is a sports lover's paradise. Inside the 6,000-square-foot full-service bar and restaurant on 1832 Harrison...

Royal Poinciana Limited Sewer Expansion Project Receives Approval

The Hollywood Commission approved a major contract with Lanzo Construction for construction services related to the water main replacement program known as the Royal...
Share This