Competition stages

The Concern Debates competition runs for several months and is completed over a number of stages. Every year, more than 100 schools argue their motions in the hope of being our next debating champions.

Engaging young people with social justice issues is empowering for the teacher and the learner and brings a real sense of energy to the classroom and to the school environment.

Sorcha Mellon - Teacher

Current Stage

The Debates Programme is now at the Semi Final Stage. The Cup and Shield fixtures have now been finalised. The Semi-finals will take place on the 14th and 15th of April live on Zoom. We want to thank all schools who took part in the debates under challenging conditions this year.

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St Kilian's German School winners at the Concern Debate Finals. Photo: Ruth Medjber.
St Kilian's German School winners at the Concern Debate Finals. Photo: Ruth Medjber.

Stages explained

Here are the several stages of the Concern Debates.

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Registration

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Registration for the Concern Debates usually begins around the summer holidays. By registering, you are not guaranteed a place. A Concern Debates staff member will be in touch to let you know if your application is successful. At the start of every debate phase, the dates and venues for the coming year are announced once teams have registered. 

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League phase

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Knockout stage

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Quarter-finals

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Semi-finals

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National final

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Debate final 2019

The 2019 finalists argued whether "China in Africa is more monster than messiah".

Concern Staff Christina at the Concern Debate Finals. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.

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