Grammar girl to represent Australia at World School Debating Championships

Isabel NolanBrisbane Girls Grammar School Year 12 student, Isabel Nolan, has been selected as one of five secondary-school students from across the country to represent Australia at the 2017 World Schools Debating Championships (WSDC) to be held in Bali from 1 to 11 August.

On Thursday 21 July 2017, Isabel was interviewed by Craig Zonca on ABC Radio Brisbane about her preparation for the upcoming competition.

Isabel is already an accomplished debater. This year, she captained the Queensland Debating Team in the National Schools Debating Championships, and last year she was awarded the Speaker of the Competition Trophy by the Brisbane Girls Debating Association.

Brisbane Girls Grammar School Principal, Ms Jacinda Euler, said that she is delighted for Isabel and the way in which her extraordinary debating prowess has been recognised.

‘Representing your country in any pursuit is an exceptional achievement. The WSDC ethos of “international understanding and freedom of speech” strongly aligns with the School’s commitment to a broad, liberal education — one that aims to empower students with critical thinking and deductive reasoning skills, while opening minds to creativity and possibility.

‘For girls to be leaders in a modern world they must have the confidence and willingness to speak up and challenge the status quo through their words and actions.

‘Isabel’s achievement exemplifies the civil, intellectual exchange that characterises the School’s emphasis on encouraging girls to think independently,’ Ms Euler said.

Isabel said she is thrilled by her selection to the Australian team and excited to learn from the different tactical approaches taken by her teammates and other students from around the world.

‘I’m keen to discover where I rank globally and sense how far my Girls Grammar training has taken me.


‘I can’t wait to take everything I learn from participating in the WSDC and share it with younger girls; to pay forward the support I have been so fortunate to receive,’ Isabel said.

Debating has had a long history at Brisbane Girls Grammar School. In the School’s 1905 Annual Report, Miss Milisent Wilkinson (Headmistress, 1900-1912) stated, ‘Form V. have just started a debating society, which will, I hope, enjoy a long and vigorous existence’. Miss Wilkinson certainly received her wish, as debating continues to be a very popular co-curricular activity at the School to this day.

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