• Matthew Bradbury

History Debating Quarter Final Result

History will repeat for Good Samaritan Catholic College as our Year 11 History Debating team has secured a place in the Semi Final of this competition for the second year running. Like 2019, they will again face Tara Anglican in this stage of the competition as the negative team. Hopefully the result will be different from last year as it was this same Tara Anglican team that knocked them out of the competition last year.

To reach this point in the competition has been the result of hardwork and dedication as the team defeated 2019 champions North Sydney Girls earlier in the week. In just their second history debate conducted via Zoom, they argued a strong case as the affirmative team on the topic ‘That Albert Speer should have been executed at the Nuremberg Trials’. While Albert Speer no longer appears in the Year 12 Modern History syllabus, it is still a topic that supports the study of Nazi Germany within the HSC Modern History Course. Considering that the topic dealt with the Nuremberg Trials it also required a healthy degree of Legal Studies understanding. I am proud to say that our team demonstrated superior skill in both areas.

In what bordered on becoming a History Extension debate, Good Samaritan developed a sophisticated criteria to argue their case. The use of criteria to construct cases has become the hallmark for great teams from Good Samaritan, and this team has started to cement their place alongside some of these great sides. They argued that since it was a history debate, that both teams must consider two important roles of the historian when making judgements about the past. The first, that the historian must consider the facts of the day and deal with events within the context of their time. On this point there appeared to be somewhat of an agreement between Good Samaritan and North Sydney. It was however, in relation to Good Samaritan’s second criteria point, where the debate was fought and won. That being that historians have the benefit of hindsight and the availability of evidence that emerges after the event. It was great to see our students not only construct such an exceptional case but to then have the ability to defend it against constant rebuttals from a strong North Sydney team.

In the end it was Good Sam’s ability to present and defend such a solid case that won them the day and a place in the top 4. They will now begin preparing for a short turnaround as they face Tara Anglican in just two weeks on the topic ‘That America has not learnt from the Salem witch trials’. We congratulate them on their achievements so far and wish them all the best on their preparations. I would also like to thank Miss Nugent for her constant support of myself and the team throughout the season.