Challoner’s Speaks, our school’s annual public speaking competition, took place in February this year, with the exciting topic, “Speak Out!”. Challoner’s Speaks allows students from Years 7 to 10 to talk about something they are passionate about, resulting in a wealth of excellent, intriguing and persuasive speeches.

The first round involved all students from the previously mentioned years, allowing everyone to join in and present their topic to their classes and teachers. It was extremely enjoyable to hear other people's thoughts and opinions on matters I hadn’t heard of or thought about. One person from each form was chosen to represent their class in the year group final, going against the other forms; these finals would take place across the week. I was fortunate enough to be chosen for the Year 7 finals, going up against an array of incredible opponents with equally amazing speeches, topics ranging from poverty to why the arts matter.

My speech, about the impending extinction of elephants, was chosen as the winner in Year 7 after all six had been performed. Congratulations to Eshwar Tewari in Year 8, Lucas Franklin in Year 9, and finally, Matthew Munn in Year 10, for getting first place in their respective years.

Overall, this competition was a brilliant success and an opportunity to further develop public speaking and writing skills, I really enjoyed it and can’t wait to take part again next year. I would like to give a special thanks to the English and Drama team for helping us along the road to our complete speeches, and all students who took part. It was a pleasure to listen to their performances.