From the need for more organ donors to making daily sports compulsory for all pupils, a students’ speaking competition covered the widest range of topics.
Hosted by Billingshurst and District Rotary Club at the village community centre, six schools and colleges took part in the Rotary Youth Speaks intermediate southern semi final on Saturday (February 9).
Worth Abbey School took part, hoping for a place in the final.
However, winners were Burgess Hill School for Girls who had the subject of ‘do you speak our language’ - exploring the complexities of text-speak.
Their keynote speaker Emma Clarke gave a mesmerising performance and also scooped the individual prize for best speaker as well.
Runner-up was Billingshurst’s Weald School which sought to answer the question: ‘Is discrimination still present in modern society?’
The other schools taking part were Midhurst Rother College, Great Walstead School and Brighton and Hove High School.
Each team was required to field a main speaker, a chairman to introduce them, and someone to give the vote of thanks.
Florence Merrett from Great Walstead was named as the best chairman, while Joe Dunsford from Midhurst Rother received the accolade for the best vote of thanks.
The adjudicators were Jackie Charman, chairman of Billingshurst Drama Society, Gerry Hinks, a former English teacher, and Gary Shipton, Editor In Chief of this newspaper, chaired the panel.
President and President Elect of the Billingshurst club Patrick Perks and Tony Priestley opened proceedings, Gael Stenton-Chandler and Ann Clark were the timekeepers, Ann Rodwell from the Weald Book Club was official questioner, and William Harmsworth presented the certificates and trophies.
The winner and runner-up teams will go forward to the District Final on March 9 in Haywards Heath.