Concern Debate Finals in the Helix Theatre. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.Concern Debate Finals in the Helix Theatre. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.Concern Debate Finals in the Helix Theatre. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.

Get your school involved

Get your school involved

Registration for the Concern Debates is now open for our 2020-21 programme! The Concern Debates will now be running a fully online programme next year.

To register your place, please contact debates@concern.net or click the button below to register your interest.

What's involved

The Concern Debates programme is open to senior cycle students and runs from October with the final taking place in May.

The programme will be run online from next September. Participating teams will record videos of their speeches to be marked online by our volunteer adjudicators.

All schools will get the chance to take part in four unique debates and learn about development issues and the work of Concern.

If you like what you’ve heard so far, please sign up below and a Concern member of staff at debates@concern.net will be in touch with further information about our online competition.

Adjudicators at the 2018 Concern Debates Final. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.
Adjudicators at the 2018 Concern Debates Final. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.
Concern Debates 2017-2018 Semi Final Adjudicators (L-R Emmanuel George, Sandra Marie Donohoe, Marie Griffin. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.
Concern Debates 2017-2018 Semi Final Adjudicators. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.
Concern Debate finalists 2019. Photo: Concern Worldwide.
Concern Debate finalists 2019. Photo: Concern Worldwide.
St. Kilian's German School at the Concern Debate Finals 2018. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.
St. Kilian's German School at the Concern Debate Finals 2018. Photo: Ruth Medjber / Concern Worldwide.

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. Registration closes Friday, September 8th this year.

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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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Our debaters have their say

Some of our past debaters talk us through how the Concern Debates gave them valuable life skills, while also offering words of wisdom to current debaters.

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Video training

New to Debating? Not sure how to structure your speech and gain top marks? Check out the students from Portmarnock Community School below. The full training series can be followed on YouTube or our materials page.

Each video highlights where the students are getting marked and are a good introduction to get acquainted with the marking sheet.

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Debate resources

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I’ve learned a lot of new skills. Last year, I was stuttering over myself while making an English presentation. Now I can go into a room and speak in front of 100 people and not be nervous at all.

2017 debate participant

Register your school

If you're ready to get involved, please sign up below and a Concern member of staff will be in touch with further information.

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