Linguists Debate at MFL Competition
Friday, 18 November 2016
Recently, a group of Sixth Form pupils took part in the annual Northern Schools’ Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) Debating Competition. Year 13 pupil Aidan Flood reports:
“A coach full of enthusiastic linguists embarked on the journey to Cheadle Hulme for the tenth annual Northern Schools’ MFL Debating Competition. Bolton School represented four languages: French, German, Russian and Spanish. There were several scintillating topics to be discussed, entirely in the foreign language, including ‘Brexit is the answer,’ ‘Give me knowledge, not power,’ ‘Numbers are better than letters’ and ‘We need to halt the progress of technology.’
“Our German debaters were the most successful, progressing through to the semi-finals. James Whalley and Anthony Lems demonstrated fantastic teamwork, as well as superb debating skills which helped them to win their first 2 debates, but unfortunately just came short of the final.
“The French team consisted of Year 12 students Sam Bowden and Tom Paterson, who did extremely well to battle competitively against people with a year’s extra language experience, but unfortunately couldn’t progress to the next round despite winning one of their debates.
“High hopes for the Spanish team of Max Hartle and Aidan Flood were unfortunately not fulfilled as they won their first debate but came up against the eventual runners-up in the second debate and were knocked out.
“We were represented by two teams in the Russian debates against rival Russian stronghold MGS. The four-ball of Edward Joyce, Oliver King, Caleb Hall Paterson and Robert Valentine applied themselves well in difficult circumstances, and shone in terms of their linguistic skills, but their rather too gentlemanly debating style lost them the race.
“On behalf of all the participants, I would like to thank all the language assistants for helping us to prepare the topics and improve our debating skills. I would also like to thank the teachers who accompanied us to Cheadle Hulme and supported us at the event. Finally, many thanks go to Cheadle Hulme for hosting such a valuable and enjoyable evening.”