Israel high school debate team snags first place in European championships

 
The Israeli high school debate team in the European championships, who came out in first, 2018. (photo credit: NICOLE CHAN/LEARNING LEADERS)
The Israeli high school debate team in the European championships, who came out in first, 2018.
(photo credit: NICOLE CHAN/LEARNING LEADERS)

The team performed better than 37 of the best debate teams in the world, including those of Germany, China, and the US.

Israel’s national high school debate team was crowned champion at the EurOpen debate competition last Wednesday in Stuttgart, Germany, marking it the first win for Israel in the competition.
The team performed better than 37 of the best debate teams in the world, including those of Germany, China and the US. They were unbeaten throughout all twelve rounds – a rare achievement in debate, and even more so for a team comprised of non-native English speakers.
Maya Carmon and Omer Zilberberg, two of the members on the team, are students at the Atid High School for Arts and Sciences in Lod. The other students on the team, Tamir West and Tomer Zucker, study at the Israel Arts and Science Academy in Jerusalem and at Oleh Shem High School in Ramat Hasharon, respectively.
“It was a privilege to witness the team making history,” said Elijah Kochin, the team’s coach who accompanied them to Stuttgart.
Kochin expressed his and the team’s gratitude to the English teachers who helped the students “debate in a foreign language,” as well as “the university debaters who spend their free time helping to coach, judge and give feedback” to the team.
“This generation of debaters is very talented,” said Miriam Kalman, a coach assisting the team leading up to the world championships in Sri Lanka. “We are looking forward to more success at the World Schools Debating Championships in 2019.”