Debate club takes 2nd place

Debate and Student Congress competition


Students in the debate club celebrate after their 2nd place win.

As students from counties all around Virginia filled the room at James River High School on Saturday, Nov. 12, they were silently preparing their speeches.

The students involved in debate and student congress competed. Joshua Davidson, 11, participated in the student congress section of the debate. 

“There were about twenty of us and we were all in a room simulating the United States Congress,” Davidson said.

Participants have been preparing for this event since the club started this school year. This was the second tournament that the team has competed in this school year. 

“It was stressful because for my event we had access to what we were going to debate about beforehand, but there is still a lot of predicting what the other participants are going to bring up,” Davidson said. “I was thinking of as many opposing view points as I could and counterarguments for them.” 

Heather Murfee is entering her second year as the head coach for the debate team. She attends all of the debates that her students participate in. 

“To be placed second out of so many schools is incredible,” Murfee said. “It was amazing to have the students put in all the work and achieve this so quickly.” 

There were two chambers at the debate so students are not all crowded in one room.

Not only did the entirety of the debate team place second overall, but Patterson Summers, 12, placed first in Chamber two. Joshua Davidson was also awarded second place for Student Congress and was awarded outstanding Senator. 

“I am so proud of my students,” Murfee said.

Last year, four students in the debate club were qualified for states. Murfee believes that they will have more than that this year.