School Debates

The Leeds Salon runs annual school debating competitions for years 10&11 pupils, as well as for sixth-forms and colleges.

For all competitions, we use the format of the sixth-form Debating Matters competition, for whom we’re also ‘Judging Partners’ – helping to run DM events in the north of England.

Since 2016, we’ve also presented The Leeds Salon Individual Prize at the Debating Matters Yorkshire Regional Final to the individual who best exemplifies the spirit of Enlightenment inquiry.

For our competitions, we rely on our growing list of Salon Judges; without whose help none of this would be possible.

If your school, college or company and would like help running your own debating competition, or would like to take part in any of the below competitions, please contact us at: contact@leedssalon.org.uk


Headingley Festival of Ideas Years 10&11 Debating Competition

Headingley Festival of Ideas was first held in May 2014, and as part of the festival Leeds Salon hosted a school debating competition for years 10&11 pupils (ages 14-16 years) as a one-off event. From 2015, we expanded the competition to include qualifying rounds to involve more Leeds schools to win a place in the final held each spring at the HEART Centre, Headingley.

Final: 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2020

Qualifying Rounds 2020


The Tetley Years 10&11 Debating Competition

The Tetley & Leeds Salon host an annual school debating competition for years 10 & 11 pupils (ages 14 to 16 years), for south and central Leeds schools. The first competition took place in January 2016 and, as well as competing to be crowned Tetley champions, the winners also go through to the final of the Headingley Festival of Ideas Years 10&11 final to compete against the north Leeds qualifying round winners.

2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2020


Other Competitions

Past debating competitions we’ve run include: Lawnswood School Summer Competition in 2014; the Ralph Thoresby School Debating Competition in 2015 as part of Headingley LitFest; Jordans Solicitors Wakefield Sixth-Form Competition in 2015 & 2016; the first ever competition between Leeds City College & Leeds College of Building in 2016; Lightcliffe Academy (Halifax) Summer Sixth-Form Competition in 2016; South Leeds Academy Christmas Debating Competition in 2016; ‘Debate Outwood’ sixth-form competition in 2017 involving schools from the Outwood Grange Academy chain; Gateacre School (Liverpool) Sixth-Form Debate in 2017; the NHS Digital/Debating Matters Sixth-Form Competition at Thackray Medical Museum in 2018; the first ever Bolton Sixth-Form College Debating Competition in 2019; and the second ‘Debate Outwood’ in competition in 2019, this time for years 10&11.

The Leeds Salon has also run many debate training events in Leeds schools and colleges.