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concern logoConcern Primary Debating Competition 2023-2024


 Concern Primary Debates Programme

The Concern Primary Debates Programme is a fun educational programme run by ESCI centres in conjuntion with Ireland's largest NGO, Concern Worldwide.  The programme is open to senior primary students. 

What are the aims of the programme?

1.  Promote a deeper awareness and understanding of the global issues affecting the lives of millions of people in the developing world.

2. To provide students with a public forum to develop skills in research, critical thinking and debating.

3. To encourage students and teachers to become lifelong advocates on issues relating to development, poverty and human rights.

What's involved?

Students will have a chance to debate against other schools on topics linking to the work of Concern and themes related to the lives of young people here in Ireland. Debates are marked by independent volunteer adjudicators who give feedback to students and announce the winner of the debate.

Training is provided for both teachers and students by Concern Worldwide along with fun resources and videos to use in the classroom to prepare for debates.

Each ESCI centre mangages debates between regional schools.  Each ESCI centre will organise a final in January.  Come February 2024, each ESCI school finalist will progress to the National Stages of the Concern Primary Debates, and be in with the chance to be the All Ireland Concern Primary Debates Champions.

Check out our website here

Check out our teacher information video here


How many per team?

There are three students per team but teachers are permitted to change teams for each debate.  There are opportunities for students to be a chairperson/timekeeper and researchers.

How do I sign up?

Contact your local ESCI centre.  Your can find a list of participating centres here 



primary school debating poster 2023 2024