The programme is led by Holly Edwards, a solicitor at Lanyon Bowdler. She grew up in Shrewsbury and went on to study Law at the University of Birmingham. She was a prominent member of the university debating club and judged at the European Debating Tournament for three consecutive years. She was also a Debatemate mentor and taught children debating skills as part of that programme.
Since leaving university, Holly has used her experience in debating, judging and teaching to set up Debate-Ed and deliver the core programme and competition. She is actively involved in the training of the mentors and supervises the debating workshops to provide support and guidance. She has also developed the curriculum used by Debate-Ed. The aim of this curriculum is to give the students a good overview of basic speaking skills and allow them to practice these in a safe and supportive environment.
‘I am really proud of how the Debate-Ed programme has developed over the last few years. This started as a simple idea that I brought to Lanyon Bowdler at my trainee interview. At that stage the main programme involved providing after-school sessions for students. This has evolved so that the Debate-Ed programme now provides workshops during the students’ English Lessons meaning that each workshop can reach more students. We have had amazing feedback from the schools and students that have taken part and I look forward to seeing how the Debate-Ed programme will continue to grow and expand’.
If you are interested in supporting the Debate-Ed programme or want your school or college to be involved, please contact Holly by clicking here.