South Dakota's top high school speech and debate competitors are busy preparing for the SDHSAA
Annual State Debate & Individual Events Tournament. The 2016 State Debate & Individual Events
Tournament will be held at Aberdeen Central High School on Friday & Saturday March 4-5. Schools,
based on their enrollment, are divided into Class "AA" and Class "A" for state tournament competition.
The State Debate & Individual Events Tournament will find students competing for state championships in
some of South Dakota’s oldest statewide high school competitions. The 2016 State Tournament will crown
the 102nd Annual State Champions in Policy Debate. Extemporaneous Speaking events have been held
for 90 years. Original Oratory is marking its 82nd year of State Championship competition. Although
having a long history in the realm of political debate, Lincoln-Douglas Debate is one of the more recent
high school state championship speech activity events and will crown its 36th group of state champions.
The newest speech activity, Public Forum Debate, will mark its 14th year as a State Tournament event.
The 2015 four-time defending Class “AA” Sweepstakes Team was Aberdeen Central High School and the
2015 Class “A” Sweepstakes champion team was Lennox High School.
No admission is charged for any of the competition and the public is invited to observe any of the
competition during the State Debate & Individual Events Tournament. The Public Forum Debate format,
which is intended for the “man-on-the-street” audience, will debate the issue of: “The United States
federal government should adopt a carbon tax”. Each Public Forum debate will provide a short
audience-oriented competition with each debate lasting approximately 35 minutes. Lincoln-Douglas
competitors will be debating the issue: “In the United States, private ownership of handguns ought to
be banned.” Natio