On February 27, 2016, Samriddhi, The Prosperity Foundation in association with Debate Network Nepal concluded the second engagement of The Liberty Debates at King’s College. This month’s theme was Market Economy and training on the idea and successive debating skills was divided into two parts – on the first day, participants were introduced to ideas of markets and how they function and the British Parliamentary (BP) debate format. On day 2 – interested participants registered for a debate on a motion related to the theme and were judged by debate adjudicators.
The first day saw enthusiastic learners being taught on ideas of free-markets, their rationale and counter-ideologies. Discussions centered on the characteristics of laissez-faire economies and planned economies and their workings. Participants were then trained on the cores of BP debating techniques and technicalities.
The second day of the engagement saw parallel debates running in English and Nepali on the given motion ‘This house, as the Government of Nepal, would privatize all public schools in Nepal’. Participants from the government side in both debates argued for privatization of education citing reasons of better allocation of educational resources due to market forces and enhancement of student abilities to compete in the international market. They also argued that privatization would ensure lowered politicization of the teaching force and that teacher absenteeism is a rarity in private schools. Participants from the opposition side argued that privatizing schools would hamper the poor’s ability to afford quality education. They also argued that private schools would screen students through testing and only take in the ‘already’ good students. The government side and the opposition side won in the English and Nepali debates respectively.
Post-debate on the second day, participants were given useful feedback on role fulfillment as speakers and brushing up content and execution. Audience members consisted of interested college and university students. Participants expressed the need for more such opportunities and were grateful for the opening of such a platform.
The Liberty Debates series aims to culminate into The Liberty Debates Championship in April, 2016 which will be a month-long debate league in BP format. Debates shall be run in both Nepali and English language categories and final scores shall be used to identify winners. The winning team is to be awarded Rs.30,000 and the runner-up Rs.20,000. The Best Speaker shall be awarded Rs.15,000. All prizes are subject to tax deductions.
The next engagement series is set to take place on the last Friday and Saturday of February (the 26th and 27th). The theme for the next month is Reservation. You can register for the next engagement by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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