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Canadian Student Debating Federation


Business No: 118836386RR0001

Canadian Student Debating Federation


Our Mission

The power of speech has long been acknowledged by Canadians; our politics, education, and laws have entrenched a respect for speech and those who wield it effectively. The Canadian Student Debating Federation also seeks to support the power of speech through exposure of young Canadians to the enriching experience that is debating. The mission statement of the CSDF is therefore threefold:

A - To promote and coordinate debate and public speech activities, on issues affecting Canadians, in secondary schools across Canada, in both official languages.

B - To promote the development and recognition of excellence within Canadian student debaters.

C - To promote travel exchange experiences for Canadian students and encourage cooperation between schools and communities.

The goals of the CSDF are aimed at fulfillment of these three components and comprise a wide spectrum of initiatives, from promotion of debating via the annual National Student Debating Seminar to provision of materials and funding for projects that encourage Canadian debating.

Also, each spring, the CSDF selects the students for Team Canada that travels to the Pan-Americans and World Schools Debating Championships.

A complete list of the goals and policies of the Canadian Student Debating Federation can be found entrenched in our Constitutional Documents.

About Canadian Student Debating Federation

In 1967 Tom Lawson, a teacher in Port Hope, Ontario brought together high school students from around the province to participate in an invitational debating tournament. Over the next few years, more and more students from all over the country were drawn to the event and in 1972 the invitational enjoyed its first year of national participation. This marked the beginning of the Canadian Student Debating Federation, an organization which has evolved in the decades since to become an overarching organization responsible for the promotion and support of high school debating in Canada.

The crowning event of the CSDF is the annual National Student Debating Seminar which evolved from that first invitational tournament into a week-long tool for introducing students to the art of debating. Held in a different province each year and incorporating both official languages and various styles of debate, the National Seminar is both a debating event and a chance for cultural exchange.


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