Speech and debate team recognized for national award


During the month of July, speech and debate teams from around the country went to Ft. Lauderdale for the national speech and debate competition.

“Competing in Nationals benefited my speech and debate skills by showing me the amount of talent around the country which pushed me to do my best,” Annabella Sacarro, freshman at Dreyfoos School of the Arts, said.

Speech and debaters compete at local tournaments throughout the year, but the team felt that nationals was a whole different experience.

Melodie Barrau, freshman at Dreyfoos School of the Arts, said, “Nationals differs because of how inclusive it is, there were hundreds of different schools, and the atmosphere was different, it was clear the months of practice everyone had been doing.”

The national tournament, held in Ft. Lauderdale over the summer, had students compete in several rounds in front of judges and their peers and trying to make it to the next level.

Sacarro, former member of the Bak speech and debate team, said, “The first few rounds I was so nervous, but towards the end I realized that this was the last time I was going to compete on the middle school circuit, and I just let loose, had fun, and did my best.”

During the award ceremony, Bak won an award for being one of the top three speech and debate schools in the entire country. Barrau thought the award “showed that we were a team start to finish and that all we had done for each other had made us one of the best teams in the country.”

Alyssa Vaknin, speech and debate coach said, “I felt elated when we won the award because it was so amazing that the entire team was able to share the joy of winning.”

The 2017-2018 speech and debate team was the first team to ever win, such a prestigious award in the team’s name, and meant so much to the members and team as a whole.

Sacarro said, “Winning the national award for our team felt like the perfect way to sum up my middle school experience. Since seventh grade, the speech and debate team has not only given me amazing speech skills and confidence, but also the most amazing friends that I truly am so grateful for.”