Skegness Grammar School played host to Matt Warman MP’s second annual William of Waynflete (WoW) inter-school debate competition, with Boston High School proclaimed worthy winners for the second year running. Boston Grammar School were runners up and all participants received medals kindly sponsored by Chattertons Solicitors and Wealth Management.
Skegness Grammar School was originally founded in Wainfleet by William of Waynflete in 1483 as a feeder school for Magdalen College Oxford , also founded by William, and the site still stands currently housing the Wainfleet library.
The debate competition was named after William who rose from humble beginnings to become Lord Chancellor of England as well as first Provost of Eton and Bishop of Winchester. It aims to raise aspiration in local students by encouraging confidence in public speaking. Four teams from Skegness and Boston Grammar Schools, Boston High School and Skegness academy, competed to ‘do battle with words’ – a concept appropriate for a parliamentary style debate which as Matt pointed out, originates from the 11th century Old French parlement meaning “discussion, discourse”.
Commenting after the event Matt Warman MP said – ‘I was delighted to extend the opportunity again for year 12 students to debate some of the most pressing issues of our time. From AI to freedom of speech, debaters showed an excellent grasp of the issues with thorough research and engaging arguments. Since my first debate last year I’ve been heartened to hear that in addition to the trip I arranged to the Houses of Parliament, schools have formed their own debate societies, held their own competitions and in one case travelled as far as Scotland to participate in debates.
The All-party Parliamentary Group on Oracy argues that Oracy should be counted alongside literacy and numeracy as a Foundational Skill with evidence showing that oracy improves academic outcomes and supports wellbeing and confidence. I am pleased to play my part in highlighting the importance of this skill and delighted that local schools have been so keen to ensure their pupils benefit.’