In memory of our departed principal, Colm Kehoe, ETSS Wicklow has upheld his enthusiasm and admiration for debating with our debating club. To practice the skills involved and allow students to work with likeminded individuals they prepare to compete in the ETSS national debating competition. 

The Debate Club is one of the most popular clubs in the school. Once a week, students meet to learn public speaking skills and to debate a current topic in the news.  The objective at ETSS Wicklow is to encourage debating in every way possible - through election campaigns for the Student Council, through debates for each year group on social topics of interest to school life, through debating activities in various subjects and also encouraging declamation as a way of refining public speaking skills. Students look at what's happening in universities (e.g. debates at Oxford and Cambridge Universities and participate in events such as the UCD Debate Event for secondary schools). Students also take part in the Concern Debates and organise a Model United Nations Conference. If you like debating, this is the right school for you! 


  1. Quintillian said (a) Be fluent (in your thinking and in delivery); (b) don't make mistakes (that comes from practice); (c) arrange your speech in the best possible way (think about style) 
  2. Aristotle said you can be persuasive through: (a) ethos: your knowledge and experience; (b) logos: your common sense, your wisdom and your logic; (c) pathos: your ability to move people's emotions (good timing of your major points helps this)
  3. Cicero said there are five stages to preparing and presenting a great speech: (a) invention of content (b) arrangement of ideas to give unity; (c) style for effect; (d) memory - never read your speech; (e) delivery - gesticulation, pacing (speeding up and slowing down), vocal variety, energy, sincerity, eye contact, appearance
  4. Demosthenes said if you want to be the one of the greatest speakers, the most important thing is work on your 'Delivery, Delivery, Delivery'