'Where the Mind is Without Fear'

Debate Competition: Middle School – SNS Faridabad It is better to debate a question without settling it than settle a question without debating it. – Joseph Joubert The month of May 2022 witnessed hallways of the Middle and Senior schools buzzing with incendiary thoughts and radical viewpoints, as Shiv Nadar School, Faridabad, opened the stage for the year’s first inter-house debate competition.

On 13 May 2022, students from the middle school brandished their metaphorical swords and entered head-on into a debate on the topic, Digital learning has made schools redundant. The WCH, became an awed spectator to multiple fresh perspectives, claims and renewed faith in physical schools. Returning to the stage after a hiatus of two years, the students were given insights into what a debate means and stands for by Director-Principal, Anju Wal, who expounded on the ideals and importance of a debate.

The jury was invited to share its judgement and views on the topic and student performance. The house swayed against the motion that day, reinstating what one of the debaters quite beautifully worded – Schools are not a brick-and-mortar building anymore; they are a metaphor, and they are omnipresent.

The winners on the day were as follows: First prize: Saanvi from Panther house Second prize: Divijaa from Panther house Third Prize: Shiven from Lion house Discussions and arguments reached another level of nuance on 20 May 2022, as students from the Senior school entered the stage with revolution in their heart and governance in their minds. The enthusiasm observed in the hall was the culmination of week-long preparations that entailed cut-throat competition and interesting alliances, all in search of the perfect code of good governance.

The motion before the house that day was, Religion and national politics should be kept apart for good governance. What followed was a fascinating exchange, as speakers both for and against the motion butted heads with each other while the rebutters had a field day, making it challenging for the judges to arrive at any kind of decision-making to declare the winners.

Finally, after the microphones were silenced, and the debaters seated again, the judgement was given. In order of precedence, the winners for the day were as follows: First prize: Neeyati from Panther House Second Prize: Kaashvi from Tiger House Third prize: Tie between Anavi Jindal from Lion House and Anvesha from Leopard House Hubert H. Humphrey had it right when he penned these iconic words: Freedom is hammered out on the anvil of discussion, dissent and debate. And the students of Shiv Nadar School, Faridabad, have undoubtedly set the tone and standard for such future engagements.

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