Chelsea High Debate Team

What is CHS Debate?

"Red Devil" Debate is Chelsea High's official debate team - a member of both the Massachusetts Forensics League and the National Forensics League. The team participates in two different types of speech events:

  • Public Forum Debate: Public Forum Debate is a fast paced, two on two debate style that mixes using evidence (published materials from magazines and newspapers) with common sense.
  • Interpretive Events (or, simply, "IE"): IE events are a departure from debate in that, while the competition is against other schools, the mode is not argumentative. Instead, the competition is based on speechwriting about current events, poetry recitation, or theatrical interpretation.
  • Students involved in CHS Debate are allowed to compete in PF Debate, IE events, or both, according to their interest(s).

Why be involved with CHS Debate?

There are MANY reasons to get involved with an active debate program:

  • Learn to think on your feet! Debate encourages you to be able to think quickly about interesting issues (immigration, gambling, and early admission programs to name a few topics we have tackled). Not only will you learn the pro's and con's about important issues - you'll learn how to present your arguments in a persuasive manner that will help you win rounds today and arguments throughout the rest of your life.
  • Get over your fear of speaking in public! Are you one of those students who becomes anxious when a teacher calls on you? You're not alone. Did you know that when people are asked to list their two greatest fears in life, #2 is death? What is #1? Being required to speak in public; most people would rather be IN the coffin than giving the eulogy! In fact, many colleges require you to take a class in public speaking. Why not be OVER that fear before you even get there?
  • For the love of competition! Every month we get to travel across Massachusetts to other high schools (from our neighbors in Revere and out to Newton and beyond) to compete against other young adults who have been studying the same topics. Winners come home with a sense of pride and accomplishment - and, of course, a trophy to adorn their walls.
  • Get involved with a proud tradition! Colleges and High Schools have been involved in competitive debate in the United States since the 1890's. Chelsea High has been involved in informal debates on several occasions but has only recently joined the official Massachusetts Forensics League (the local chapter of the national debate association).
  • It looks GREAT on your college transcript! Many colleges and universities actively look for great debaters in the way that they look for great football or basketball players. Why? Because they know that debaters have the skills that are required for success in college. By becoming active in a High School debate program, you have yet another way of standing out against the crowd when your application arrives at your choice schools!

Who is CHS Debate?

Team Captain 2006/2007: Stephanie
Team Treasurer: Jimmy
Coaches: Mr. DeCoste and Ms. Lavigne

All members, like any team, are required to be in good academic standing.

Where/When is CHS Debate?

The High School debate season runs from September through May; there are monthly regular meetings, scrimmages, and tournaments. CHS Debate meets regularly on Fridays, from 2:30-3:30 in B2205. We have approximately one scrimmage (typically after school) and one full tournament every month (typically on Saturdays).

How does someone get involved in CHS Debate?

Stop by a meeting and find out!






©Chelsea Public Schools

500 Broadway, City Hall Room 216
Chelsea, Massachusetts 02150
Phone: 617-466-4477 | Fax: 617-889-8361
Superintendent Mary M. Bourque, Ed.D.