On the last weekend of April, two of our high school debaters, sophomore Tajaih Robinson and senior Aida Bathily, travelled to Kentucky to compete in the Tournament of Champions, the most competitive debate tournament in the country. Both of them reached the quarter finals of the Lincoln Douglas (LD) section, placing sixth and seventh respectively out of 88 top debaters from across the country.
42 middle school scholars and 14 high schoolers from Success Academy competed in the 44th Annual Harvard National Forensics Tournament, where they faced hundreds of top-ranked debaters from around the country in policy debate. The tournament concluded with 36 wins for SA’s 19 middle school teams at the high school tournament. Our high schoolers performed exceptionally well — with SA High School of the Liberal Arts senior Sekou Cisse winning the Lincoln-Douglas division and his peers senior Aida Bathily and sophomore Tajaih Robinson making it to the quarterfinals and earning a trip to the Tournament of Champions in April!
On Saturday, January 20, Success Academy Harlem North Central won first place in the Advanced Section at a tournament hosted by the Newark Debate Academy. Forty SA scholars from schools throughout the network traveled to Newark, New Jersey, to participate in the debate.
As the manager of Success Academy’s debate program, I am proud that we are introducing policy debate to our scholars this year — and just as proud to launch the Success Academy Debate League, which will bring students from across the city to rigorous, Success Academy-run tournaments.
This school year, my husband and I have spent many weekends supporting our son Henry as he debates topics like the Cuban trade embargo and immigration at middle school debate tournaments around NYC.
Last month, nine scholars at Success Academy Harlem East traveled to Washington D.C., where they met with members of Congress, toured the U.S. Capitol Building, and put on a debate showcase.
Success Academy tenth-grader Sekou Cisse loves a good argument. A seasoned member of the SA High School of the Liberal Arts debate team, Sekou joined debate as a seventh grader at Success Academy Harlem West.