Barkley Forum for High Schools
2020 — Atlanta, GA/US
Dear Forensics Director:
It is our pleasure to welcome the member schools of the Barkley Forum for High Schools to the 65th Annual Barkley Forum for High Schools at Emory University in Atlanta, which will be held January 24, 25, and 26, 2020. It is an equal pleasure to invite applications from other schools to be with us in January. Emory University has a historic commitment to forensics, both high school and college. We look forward to seeing the member schools, and we anticipate invitations (which follow applications) for the interested schools with superior debate and forensic students.
We will have multiple judges’ lounges with coffee and snacks spread throughout the campus.
All events will be held on the Emory University campus. In Public Forum, LD, and Pelham Debates, all schools may apply for up to three teams/competitors.
We will be doing background checks on all tournament-hired judges for the tournament, and all judges provided by the schools must have completed a successful background check conducted by the schools.
We will once again have The Pelham Debates starting at 1:30 on Emory’s campus. You will be responsible for paying for your parking on Friday, since this is earlier than we are able to gain access to the parking decks. We will have three rounds on Friday, four on Saturday, and start with octos on Sunday morning.
All rounds on Sunday will be centered out of the new Emory Student Center in lieu of starting the day in White Hall.
After the 2019 tournament, we surveyed those with participants in Public Forum to see if they would prefer to return to the Emory campus with a firm 3-team cap or if they would prefer we hold Public Forum at Druid Hills High School again and allow schools the possibility of bringing up to four teams. The overwhelming preference was to be back on the Emory campus, so the Public Forum division will be held on Emory’s campus. Member Schools will be guaranteed three teams, and non-member schools may apply for three teams.
We will be requiring all judges to submit a paradigm in tabroom.com. Please have all judges post their judge paradigm on tabroom.com under “paradigms.”
We are using NSDA Pilot Rules for Public Forum. All rounds will have 3 minute summaries. Each team will have 3 minutes of prep time.
All rounds on Sunday will be centered out of the new Emory Student Center, Alumni Memorial University Center, and the School of Medicine in lieu of starting the day in Candler Library.
All rounds on Sunday will be centered out of the new Emory Student Center, Alumni Memorial University Center, and the School of Medicine in lieu of starting the day in Math and Science.
We will use electronic ballots in Congressional Debate; please make sure all judges have access to a laptop or iPad on which they can enter comments.
As a pilot for the NSDA, the Barkley Forum will (1) limit debate on any bill or resolution to no more than one hour and (2) allow Internet access during rounds per NSDA pilot rules.
We would again like to showcase the final round of a speech event and highlight it in a way similar to what we have done for the Pelham Debates since the inception of the tournament. This year, the finals of Original Oratory will be held at the same time as the finals for the Pelham Debates, with Key Coaches adjudicating both events. After the final rounds, awards for all events will be held simultaneously in the new Emory Student Center.
We have immense respect for the educators who make speech and debate programs available in schools, the schools who support those speech and debate programs, and the students who have put in the hard work required to attend the Barkley Forum for High Schools. In order to respect all of these entities, we have these policies and procedures in place:
To stay true to the founding principle of the Barkley Forum for High Schools – to encourage the development of high-quality forensics programs at high schools around the country – the tournament will only accept applications from students representing their high schools. No independent entries will be allowed, and no entries representing entities other than high schools will be allowed. Rare exceptions to this policy may be made at the discretion of the tournament director. If you would like to request an exception, please email Ed Lee at firstname.lastname@example.org to describe your situation.
If a student is not accompanied by his/her debate coach to the tournament, s/he must have a hard copy of a letter on school letterhead from the school’s administration indicating the student has permission to compete on behalf of the school. If the student is not able to provide the letter upon request during the tournament, tournament administration reserves the right to remove the student from the competition and forfeit all previous rounds.
If students qualify to participate in the tutorials (i.e., clear), they are expected to be available through the final exhibition round to respect their opponents and the participants who will learn from their performance. If a student must leave the tournament and cannot participate in a tutorial or exhibition round for which s/he has qualified, s/he will forfeit his/her award and all rounds. Special circumstances may lead to rare exceptions to this rule at the tournament director’s discretion. We are providing this information so you may make your travel plans accordingly.
Unless approved by the tournament director, if you choose not to participate in a tutorial or exhibition (outround), you forfeit all previous rounds. We will submit your results reflecting no wins/last place in each round to the TOC, NIETOC, and other entities to whom we provide results.
In order for the tournament to function effectively, if you know there will be circumstances that will require you to leave prior to the conclusion of the tournament, please let us know as soon as you are aware of these circumstances.
Reminder that our mailing address has changed to:
Atlanta, GA 30322
Please make sure your bookkeeper sends any checks (made out to Emory University) to the updated address. Our physical office location remains the same but has a new physical address: Alumni Memorial University Center, 630 Means Drive, Suite 135.
Please note that Emory is a tobacco-free campus. For more information, please visit www.tobaccofree.emory.edu.
We will be using tabroom.com and electronic balloting for all divisions. We require that all judges have an established, functional Tabroom account - including a cell phone number listed - prior to being registered as a judge. If there are any questions about this requirement, please feel free to let us know.
For use while you are on campus, consider downloading Emory Mobile. Under “Campus Connection,” there are maps, and there are also instructions for getting your wireless devices connected to WiFi, dining information, etc.
We will give doubles awards in all debate events following rounds on Saturday night (after the First Tutorial in Public Forum, the Walter Alan Ulrich Tutorial in LD, and the Anne Douglas White Tutorial in Pelham), the semifinals awards in Congressional Debate on Sunday morning, and the quarterfinals awards (tutorials participants) in speech events on Sunday morning. We will also give all but the top 5 speaker awards in Pelham and Public Forum before doubles are announced and will give octofinals awards in LD, PF, and Pelham at the conclusion of octofinal rounds.
It is an expectation of the tournament that students will accurately represent material read during speeches. In order to ensure compliance, students may record their opponents’ speeches. It is the responsibility of coaches to ensure that their debaters and parents understand this tournament requirement and complete the paperwork necessary to ensure compliance with applicable state laws.
Please ensure your judges show up, particularly on Sunday. For judges that do not show for an assigned round, we will assess a $50 per round fine to be added to your 2021 entry fee. In addition, it will endanger any Member Schools’ standing.
Mavericks in 2-team events cannot clear or advance; they must have debated as a team collectively for at least 4 rounds in prelims to clear. In Pelham Debates, each debater has to give a constructive and a rebuttal to be considered having debated in a round (barring extenuating circumstances such as a mid-round forfeit); if both debaters have not done so during a round, they cannot advance.
Applications to attend (including the competitive records/qualifiers for each student applying) from non-member schools must be entered on the BFHS website no later than December 2, 2019. Indications of attendance from member schools must be entered on the website by the same date. Shortly thereafter, an email will be sent to all the schools that have been selected to attend.
In order to launch the tournament appropriately and celebrate the 65th anniversary of the tournament, we will have an Opening Awards Assembly for all students, coaches, and judges from 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. on Friday, January 24th in the ballroom of the Marriott Century Center during which participants will hear a keynote speaker, recognize the new Key coaches, and honor the winner of the Melissa Maxcy Wade Social Justice Award. We are honored that Greg Varley, Key Coach and retired speech and debate coach and teacher from Lakeland High School (NY), will be our keynote speaker this year. Also, Ms. Sally Yates, Former U.S. Deputy Attorney General, will receive the Georgia Speaker of the Year Award. We anticipate that pairings will be available at the end of the Opening Awards Assembly.
For guests wishing to use the electronic registration/on-site check-in alternative on January 24th in lieu of coming to registration at the Marriott, please note that your entry fees must be received by the Barkley Forum prior to registration and you must check in online by 11:00 a.m. (See FAQ section for more information on how e-registration works.)
Registering for and participating in the Barkley Forum for High Schools constitutes consent to use participants’ image in promotional materials for the tournament/Barkley Forum. Participating schools assume any and all responsibility and liability for both student and adult participants from their schools and by registering attest that an adult will be present at the tournament and will assume all responsibility for the school’s students. Additionally, while Emory will be conducting background checks on all judges we provide, all judges provided by the schools must have completed a successful background check conducted by the schools.
In Public Forum Debate, we are accepting three entries from Member Schools. We will accept three applications from non-member schools, and admission will be granted based upon space available. Teams will get three judge strikes for preliminary rounds.
In Congressional Debate, we are accepting ten entries from Member Schools. We will accept ten applications from non-member schools, and admission will be granted based upon the space available.
The Pelham Debates feature two-person, switch-sides debating using the cross-examination format. Member schools will send their most experienced teams since the FORUM IS NOT A PRACTICE-TYPE TOURNAMENT. This year we are accepting three entries from Member Schools. We will accept three applications from non-member schools, and admission will be granted based upon space available. There will be six preliminary rounds of debate. The top 32 teams will be asked to participate in five exhibition rounds. We will have a mutual judge preference system for the Pelham Debates (using an ordinal ranking system), so it is especially important that your judges are entered accurately in a timely fashion. If your judges are not entered by the time prefs go up, you will be required to pay the full judge hire fee. Please have all judges post their judge philosophy on tabroom.com under “paradigms.” You will not be allowed to enter prefs until all your judges have supplied a paradigm. More details about prefs will follow via email closer to the tournament date. Please note that the judge preferences do not apply to The Thomas Glenn Pelham Silver Key Debate.
In Lincoln-Douglas, we are accepting three entries from Member Schools. We will accept three applications from non-member schools, and admission will be granted based upon space available. Up to the top 32 individuals (with a 4-2 record or better) will be asked to participate in the exhibition rounds. We will have a mutual judge preference system for the Lincoln-Douglas Debates, so it is especially important that your judges are entered accurately in a timely fashion. If your judges are not entered by the time prefs go up, you will be required to pay the full judge hire fee. Please have all judges post their judge philosophy on tabroom.com under “paradigms.” You will not be allowed to enter prefs until all your judges have supplied a paradigm. More details about prefs will follow via email closer to the tournament date. Please note that the judge preferences do not apply to The Dale Lauder McCall Exhibition.
In Speech Events, four entries per school are permitted in any one event. No triple entries will be allowed.
The Final Awards Ceremony will be held in the new Emory Student Center. You will not want to miss the Presentation of the Silver Keys and supportive awards, as it is nationally unique.
If there are any last-minute changes, please notify us in writing at EmoryBFHS@gmail.com. During the course of the tournament, we will be posting updates on Tabroom.
We hope to bring you the best possible forensics experience we can offer. May we hear from each of you soon.
Ed Lee, Tournament Director
Kara Grant, Tournament Administrator