Stratford Novice Fall Invitational

2019 — Milpitas, CA, CA/US

Welcome to the third annual Stratford Schools Novice Tournament! We are excited to be hosting the event in October this year and look forward to hosting a second event in Spring 2020!

This will be a speech & debate tournament. We will have a full day of preliminary rounds for both speech and debate. The following day will include a final preliminary round and then the elimination rounds. We will do at least a quarter, semi, and final, but may expand to octo if we have enough entrants.

High school freshman will be allowed if they have no prior debate experience, all middle school students welcome.

Fees will be $40/student ($80 for one PF team). Please make checks out to "Stratford Schools." Lunch will be provided both days, and there will be snacks and drinks available for purchase with cash at the event.


We are now allowing for double entry between Debate and Speech events. If a student wants to enter LD or PF, they may also enter speech events. If students would like to double-enter in Speech events, we will have a protocol for students to enter a maximum of 2 Speech events. Students double-entered will need to speak first, and then they must transfer to their other room to finish out the round.


Coaches may double-enter judges to cover their obligations with one caveat: a judge can only cover one debate event in addition to speech, otherwise, they will be running non-stop to judge the whole weekend. We recommend registering your speech judges first, then double-entering them for one debate category.


For Novice Debate, we will have both Public Forum and Lincoln-Douglas formats.


For Novice Speech, we will have Original OratoryOratorical InterpDramatic InterpHumorous InterpImpromptuExpository, and Duo Interp formats. The regular 10-minute maximum times will be in place for those who prepare to use the full time, but we will allow novice entrants to scale down to a minimum of 6 minutes. Oratorical Interp has no minimum time, but a hard-maximum of 10 minutes with no grace period. Impromptu and Expository will have their regular 7-minute time limits. If we have enough interest in speech this year, then next year we can confidently split speech into Novice and Experienced divisions with separate timing rules, but based on our previous experience, we do not tend to have enough competitors to split divisions, so we are doing our best to accommodate a variety of skill levels in this start-of-the-year tournament.



This tournament will be all digital. Rounds will be announced via e-mail and SMS, ballots will be tabulated digitally. Thus, it is imperative that students and judges have some way to access digital information. Students and judges should also register their e-mail and phone number (if applicable) with their tabroom account so that information gets pushed out in a timely fashion.

Judges should bring a tablet or laptop in order to make tabulating ballots easier and quicker, in addition to their phones. Phones will work for filling out ballots, but they are not ideal.