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News Release


Deidra Powell, Chief Communications Officer

(714) 558-5555 Office, (714) 673-4995 Mobile

Santa Ana Unified Speech and Debate National Qualifying Championship Tournament

 Producing Our Leaders of Tomorrow through the Art of Speech and Debate

SANTA ANA, CA (May 1, 2017) – More than 300 intermediate students in the Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD) will compete and demonstrate their oratorical skills during the District’s Speech and Debate National Qualifying Championship tournament to be held this Saturday, May 6, 2017, from 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. at Santa Ana High School, located at 520 West Walnut Street in Santa Ana. “This is another example of the unique opportunities exclusive to Santa Ana Unified students. Our intermediate students are getting a jumpstart to speech and debate which is normally offered only at the high school level. They are learning early the skills and art that will benefit them not only during competitions but throughout their lives.” said, Stefanie P. Phillips, Ed.D., Superintendent. According to Kiwanis leader Alfredo Amezcua, “Kiwanis is collaborating with the Santa Ana Unified School District to ensure that our youth become the leaders of tomorrow. Students will have the opportunity to write and memorize speeches and perform them in front of an audience to bolster their confidence and academic success while creating a path toward college.”  The top speakers will be flown to compete at the National Speech and Debate Association National Tournament in Birmingham, AL on June 17th.

“What makes this program unique is that it is very rare to have a Speech and Debate Program offered at all intermediate schools in a school district particularly with the size of Santa Ana USD and high student population of Latinos and English Language Learners. Santa Ana is 7th largest district in California with a student population of 94% Latino and 60% English Learners. A program of this magnitude is typically reserved for high school. To mentor and watch these students become so confident in their delivery is amazing,” said Sal Tinajero, Speech and Debate Communication Specialist in the Santa Ana Unified School District.

Students will compete in prose reading, persuasive speaking, poetry reading, duo acting, impromptu speaking and public forum debate. They will interpret literature from some of the best poets and authors of literary merit. The event is free, and open to parents, students, and members of the community.

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