Early High School has a great tradition of Cross-Examination – aka CX – Debate. However, this year’s CX teams have a few factors working against them.

Some of the debaters have very little public speaking experience. On top of that, with the district changes, the CX'ers will compete against new, more challenging opponents, according to Brittany Dunlap, debate sponsor at EHS.

The two EHS CX teams this year consist of the Kassidy Allen and Jake Fisher duo and the Jakob Morgan and Kade Ryan twosome. Both Allen and Morgan are fairly experienced in this type of debate. Allen placed fourth in the 2011-2012 district competition, and this will be her third year doing CX. Morgan has been to many meets and is on his second year as a debate member.

Despite the odds, Dunlap said, the two teams have been working very hard to build a strong case. This year’s resolution on which the teams will be arguing throughout the entire season is “Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase its transportation infrastructure investment in the United States.”

Debate team participants must research and build an affirmative case and find negative evidence to refute any possible case they might come up against. Needless to say, the teams have to put in many hours of work throughout the week. Luckily they have their senior captain, Hanna Harkey, to turn to for help. Harkey is a two-time contender at the state tournament in Austin and had the fortune of advancing to octa-finals. While Harkey is no longer participating in CX, she still helps and gives advice to her younger, less experienced teammates. With the help of Coach Dunlap and Harkey, the students work in their debate class period to not only research, but to improve speech giving techniques. Each team will go to several tournaments throughout fall and winter in preparation for the district tournament scheduled for Feb. 6, 2013, in Early First United Methodist Church.