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Deputy Minister stresses the importance of debate in schools

By Naneka Hoffman

Deputy Minister of Education for Instructions, Alexander N. Duopu says debates, particularly in high schools offer a unique opportunity for education stakeholders to see themselves in the mirror clearly, adding that the importance of debate in the Liberian education system can’t be overemphasized.

He says debate provides practice in developing sound and logical arguments and gives students an opportunity to practice speaking in front of an audience and thinking on their feet.

Speaking on Thursday, March 3, 2022, during the official launch of the 2022 Edition of the Liberia National Debate Championship at the Monrovia Christian Fellowship Church in Sinkor, Deputy Duopu emphasized that students participating in debate show initiative and leadership and even research. He notes that debaters’ performance expands their minds and increases their understanding of multiple sides of important issues.

Moreover, he says students sharpen their research skills in preparing for debates while adding that debate develops skills and knowledge.

He stressed that the educational system exists to transform students from not knowing enough to knowing enough, and it must help students achieve quality education and grow their potential otherwise, he adds it is needless.

The 2022 National Debate Championship was launched with the theme: Measuring Learning Outcomes in Liberia’s Secondary Education Level.’’

In remarks, World Bank Liberia Country Manager, Dr. Khwima Nthara said young students should take advantage of the platform to increase their understanding of various societal issues that are impacting their well-being today.

Dr. Nthara says it is against this background that they intend to partner with Youth for Change to use its platform to share knowledge about the World Bank to increase students’ understanding about various thematic issues impacting the development of society.

“Through your active participation in this competition, you are going to be empowered to play a vital role in your own development, as well as that of your communities”, he says.

The World Bank Liberia Country Manager explains that youth development is a process that prepares a young person to meet challenges of adolescence and adulthood, and achieve his or her full potential, saying “Youth development is promoted through activities and experiences that help youth develop social, ethical, emotional, physical, and cognitive competencies.”

He notes that some of the elements that can protect young people and put them on the path to success include family support, caring adults, positive peer groups, a strong sense of self and self-esteem, and involvement at school and in community.

“Therefore, I strongly urge you to take advantage of the competition and serve as role models for other young people. You can make difference and avoid the path of drug addiction, crime and other vices that tend to undermine the development of the society”, Dr. Nthara challenges students here. Editing by Jonathan Browne


The New Dawn is Liberia’s Truly Independent Newspaper Published by Searchlight Communications Inc. Established on November 16, 2009, with its first hard copy publication on January 22, 2010. The office is located on UN Drive in Monrovia Liberia. The New Dawn is bilingual (both English & French).
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