中高等部 ‐ NFLJ
Secondary - NFLJ


Last summer, two teams from Gunma Kokusai Academy attended the National Forensic League Japan’s (NFLJ) National Debate Tournament held in Yamanashi, with both teams placing in the top 25, and one team qualifying for the US National Tournament to be held in Florida in 2018.

The tournament was held at iCLA in Yamanashi Gakuin University in Kofu, Yamanashi. High school debate teams from both Japan and abroad competed. There were a total of 57 teams, including students from Shanghai, China, and British Columbia, Canada.

Isamu Isozaki and Ryota Okamoto, 11th grade students, and Moe Ishii and Mew Kano, 10th grade, represented GKA at the tournament. It was the first time for all four students to participate in the public forum debate, and they were understandably nervous, but their impressive performances belied any nervousness.

The topic for the public forum debate was “On balance, governments should guarantee a universal basic income for all taxpaying members of a society.” Students researched the topic in the months prior to the debate and prepared persuasive arguments. The point of the competition was not to defeat one’s opponent, but to convince the audience that one’s argument was the more persuasive one. This created a very collegial atmosphere, and GKA’s students found themselves chatting, exchanging tips and friendly advice with their opponents after each debate.

Isamu and Ryota ultimately won three out of four of their debates, and Moe and Mew won half of their debates. At the end of a long day of debating, the students felt invigorated and enthusiastic, and all of them look forward to participating in more debate competitions in the near future.