City Council Debates!
About the City Council Debate Initiative
In 2011 less than 1% of city schools and less than 1% of city students had access to competitive debate opportunities. Scholastic debate was limited to a handful of the city's top private, public and charter schools. The New York City Urban Debate League was founded by NYC public school teachers, schools, City Council Members, The National Association of Urban Debate Leagues (NAUDL), and the National Speech & Debate Association (NSDA) to reverse these statistics. Today, thanks to this unique public-private partnership over 200 schools now have debate teams and over 3000 students participate in debate each year. We host debate tournaments every weekend in nearly every City Council District, workshops every week, scholarships to our city's top debaters to travel every month, public debate seminars every month, Debate Educator Conferences quarterly, and Debate Institutes all summer. We are the largest debate league in the nation. President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama recognized us as one of the top after school programs in the arts and humanities with the "White House Youth Award."
- Debate is one of the most powerful academic programs.
- Debate doubles out of school learning time
- Debate teaches every academic skill: public speaking, critical thinking, research, reading, writing, listening, questioning and more!
- Debate teaches every academic subject: civics, philosophy, political science, geography, international affairs, economics, critical theory and more!
- Debate closes the Civic Achievement Gap: thousands of students participate in debates on current events and thousands of community members - parents, families, volunteers, educators participate in debates as judges or observers.
- Debate changes lives.
- Debate changes schools.
- Debate increases all academic benchmarks - graduation rates, testing scores, attendance, behavior
- Debate teaches conflict resolution and socio-emotional skills
- Debate teaches 21st century learning skills
City Council Debate Initiatives
Manhattan City Council Districts
Bronx City Council Districts
Queens City Council Districts
Brooklyn City Council Districts
Staten Island City Council Districts