Debate Announcements

Summer Debate Camp/Clinic Rules
Debate coaches may work with students all summer on a voluntary basis. Coaches may NOT make summer camp a requirement of students.

Coaches may host a 1 week camp in the summer for their own students. However, the school can’t pay a fee for any camp, or finance any camp (1 week host camp may be held in the school library or similar area). *Transportation: School districts may permit school owned transportation to be used to transport students to debate summer camps, clinics, workouts or scrimmages with other schools. KSHSAA catastrophic insurance does not cover these summer activities. Individual school districts will decide whether to permit school owned transportation to be used for these activities.

By interpretation, concerning debate summer camp rule, debate season doesn’t start until the first competition date. Thus invitational debate clinics/camps may be held up to September 15, 2017. If a school authorizes a field trip to a clinic, they may fund and provide school bus transportation. (Field trip means all students attending must be enrolled in an academic debate class). This type of trip could only be during the school calendar year.

Debate (2017-18 School Year)
IMPORTANT - If your school plans on participating in Debate in Fall 2017, the head coach must ask their Athletic Directors to enter your school. Remember, the old Debate participation card is now a part of the ADM-1 (administrator form) and is due August 17, 2017.

2017-18 Debate Rule Changes

Changes adopted by the KSHSAA Executive Board and published in the 2017-18 Debate, Speech & Drama Manual:

KSHSAA Debate Regulations

Sec. 9. National Tournament Qualifiers – Students who qualify via competition standards to an approved national tournament may participate in an additional three (3) debate activities beginning SCW #30. No student shall exceed a total of five (5) tournaments after SCW #30, including those national tournament they attend. The national tournaments must be approved by the National Association of Secondary Principals (NASSP) as required by the KSHSAA Bylaw, Article XIV.

Debate Regulations

Sec. 15. Grievances – The following procedure shall be used for all challenges and protests at regional and state debate tournaments:

  • a. A grievance committee, composed of three coaches and the championship manager, will handle written protests concerning the violation of any KSHSAA rule. The committee shall be appointed by the championship manager and MUST BE head coaches. It is recommended the KSCA representative be on the grievance committee. An alternate head coach shall be named in the event a committee member’s school is involved.
  • f. The decision of the grievance committee is final. In the event the grievance committee determines that a rule has been violated, that decision MUST include: a letter from the KSHSAA to the coach’s administration and one or more of the following actions: warning, loss of round, last rank in the section, or disqualification which may or may not include prior rounds.

2-Speaker Debate Scheduling

  • 6. In octafinals, quarterfinals and/or semifinals, brackets will be broken so that teams from the same school will note meet. During finals, teams from the same school may meet. The opponents debated, or sides debated, by other teams from the same school are irrelevant after the preset rounds. It is possible to meet the same school numerous times.
  • In breaking brackets, the team with the stronger ranking should remain in its original position and the team with the weaker ranking should move. Keep the teams as close to their original rankings as possible (for example, adjust a team ranked 6 with 7 or 5).

“Points of Emphasis”

Sharing of Evidence – When called for by an opposing team, debaters will make available to the opposing team, in a form usable by the opposition, evidence that was read in the round upon request. Evidence will be returned to the team that read it prior to the opponent’s next speech. Evidence need not be shared prior to its reading in the round.

Rule 30 Seasons of Activities Sec. 1 Art. 5 states Interschool scrimmages (practices) in all activities shall be prohibited. a) Schools may not hold interschool scrimmages (practices) in athletics, scholars’ bowl or debate/speech. Interschool is defined as senior high school with another senior high school.

Students from two different schools may not be pared up to debate. This is a violation of Rule 14 Bona Fide student rule – “in order to be eligible for participation, the student must be a bona fide undergraduate member of that school and in good standing.” The only way students from two different schools may compete together is if both schools have formed a Cooperative Agreement through provisions of Rule 29.

Electronic Retrieval Device Option
No electronic communication or internet access is allowed during debate rounds. The use of cell phones will not be permitted in competition rounds at regional or state debate tournaments. The use of electronic devices by competitors in debate events is permissible for flowing or evidence retrieval so long as wired or wireless connection devices are disabled and remain disabled while the debate is in progress. Refer to Debate Manual page 9 Sec. 8 for specific details.

“Approval of Events” --Attention Debate Coaches and Activity Directors
KSHSAA member schools may NOT attend Debate tournaments which involve two or more states unless the event is listed on our KSHSAA “approved list”. Upon receiving an invitation, schools need to check the “approved list” link on KSHSAA’s front web page before signing up. If the event isn’t on the list and you want to attend, contact the host school and ask them to contact their state’s athletic or activity association and complete the proper sanctioning forms to get it approved in Kansas. If this doesn’t work call Craig Manteuffel for assistance. This does not guarantee that it will be approved, thus you must wait to make sure it appears on the approved list otherwise you may NOT attend.

Clarification on 2-Speaker State Debate qualifying computation for win-loss record:
The manual reads: Sec. 2 State Qualifications — Each school’s individual debater shall have qualified during the current school year in the following ways:

  • Qualified in tournaments in which at least five (5) schools are in attendance.
  • Qualified in a minimum of four (4) tournaments above the novice division.
  • Each individual debater must have participated in at least four (4) rounds of competition at each qualifying tournament.
  • Each individual debater must have a cumulative win/loss record of 50 percent or better over four (4) in-state tournaments above the novice division. (You may choose any 4 tournaments, with 4 rounds or more, and total up the number of wins-losses your team participated in to determine the 50% or above qualification. You may NOT take out certain rounds within a qualifying tournament to make your win-loss higher. You must count all rounds the team actually participated in or no rounds from each tournament. You may NOT count only prelim rounds unless these were the only rounds the team participated in.)

Coaches have asked how to count a Bye and how to count a “walkover” (when two teams from same school meet but decide not to debate to settle placing). You are to count these scenarios as follows: A Bye counts as a win. A walkover counts as a win for both teams. IMPT-- Any round debated as a maverick cannot be counted for state qualification.


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