Lexington Winter Invitational

2022 — NSDA Campus, MA/US

Greetings Friends and Welcome to Big Lex 2022!

We really hoped to be able to invite you back to our campus to help us bring in the New Year, but given the uncertainty regarding travel for many of our guests from other states, and the logistical challenge of feeding hundreds of people in January in New England (we encourage our students to eat outside, but that seems an unfair ask of our warm weather guests), we will again bring the tournament to you via NSDA Campus.

The good news is that the virtual world allows us more flexibility in divisions and the kinder gentler schedule PF and LD enjoy in the single-flighted world.

Although we will publish a more detailed schedule soon, the outlines of the schedule and the events are below:

Policy

Divisions -- Varsity/JV/Novice Open/Novice NDCA Packet

Rounds -- 6 prelims, 4 on Saturday Jan. 15 and 2 on Sunday Jan. 16 with the first two elims in every division also taking place on Sunday. Additional elims will take place on Monday. All 4-2s and better will clear.

Judging -- We will use a Six Category Pref system for Varsity Policy and allow a limited number of strikes in JV policy (and no strikes in either novice division). Varsity Policy judges ONLY may be entered with rounds of commitment (3 rounds required per entry). All other policy judges should plan to judge throughout the tournament, although coaches can block certain days for certain Novice and JV judges, as long as there is complete coverage in those events for all of the days of the tournament.

Novice Divisions -- It is our intention to offer BOTH an NDCA Packet Division and an Open Division in Novice. However, if, by the START of Winter Break, one or both of those divisions are NOT viable, we will reach out to the coaches involved regarding combining the novice divisions, or perhaps asking that novices in the Open Division try JV instead, if that makes more sense. Novices MUST be competing on their first topic this season.

The JV Division -- As a general rule, JV is the place for students with one or more years of Middle School Experience and for students in their second year of high school debate (especially if they did not get much experience last year). Novices looking for a challenge could also try JV, but students with three or more years of debate experience (at any level) almost certainly should be in the Varsity Division, not JV.

LD

Divisions -- Varsity/JV/Novice

Rounds -- 6 prelims, 5 on Saturday Jan. 15 and 1 more on Sunday Jan. 16 before the elims begin. It is our intention to finish the Novice and JV divisions of LD on Sunday evening, and depending on the sizes of the fields, it may be necessary to run Semis and Finals in Varsity LD on Monday. All 4-2s and better will clear.

Judging -- We will use a Six Category Pref system for Varsity LD and allow a limited number of strikes in JV LD (and no strikes in the novice division). All judges should plan to judge throughout the tournament, although coaches can block certain days for certain judges, as long as there is complete coverage in those events for all of the days of the tournament.

Novice and JV -- The Novice Division is for students who have never debated before the start of the 2021-2022 school year and the JV Division is for students in their second year of high school debate (unless they want a greater challenge) and for students with one or more years of middle school experience.

PF

Divisions -- Varsity/JV/Novice

Rounds -- 6 prelims, 5 on Saturday Jan. 15 and 1 more on Sunday Jan. 16 before the elims begin. It is our intention to finish the Novice and JV divisions of PF on Sunday evening, and depending on the sizes of the fields, it may be necessary to run Semis and Finals in Varsity PF on Monday. All 4-2s and better will clear.

Judging --  Varsity and JV PFers will have strikes -- there are no strikes in the novice division. All judges should plan to judge throughout the tournament, although coaches can block certain days for certain judges, as long as there is complete coverage in those events for all of the days of the tournament.

Novice and JV -- The Novice Division is for students who have never debated before the start of the 2021-2022 school year and the JV Division is for students in their second year of high school debate (unless they want a greater challenge) and for students with one or more years of middle school experience.

Other things to think about:

1) We still have some schools who have failed to pay us for Big Lex LAST YEAR. Despite that, we are not demanding payments in advance from everyone, just from those schools who still owe us money. Remember that ALL SCHOOLS are morally obligated to pay us what they owe as of the FEES FREEZE DEADLINE.

2) We do not expect to have many spare judges for schools to hire, but if you believe you might need a little judging assistance, please put in those requests early. No school can hire all of its judges. There will be a scary large missing judge fee on your invoices until you actually enter your judges, so please do not assume paying that fee means you don't need judges. The fee is supposed to be large enough to remind you to bring your own judges because money does not judge rounds, only living and breathing humans do. Many of the judges we hire will be hired to make the tournament better, with only extra judges being available for others to hire.

3) We will be mailing out plaques and medals after the conclusion of the tournament to everyone in the elims and an appropriate number of top speakers. Please fill out the Refund Section on Tabroom because that way will have your school address and we won't need to bother everyone with another form later. We actually can't send refunds, so we recommend processing and mailing your checks once your entries are solid, or at the time of the fees freeze deadline, unless you are a school that owes us money from last year.

4) We will not be using the NSDA Campus Observer feature, nor will we be requiring you to submit school or individual entry participation forms. However, we will ONLY accept registrations from OFFICIAL schools and will investigate any entries which do not look official before admitting them from the waitlists. All entries will initially be waitlisted and it is fine to register more entries than our initial caps would allow. We want diverse fields, but will add more entries from interested schools as the field sizes permit.

5) Judge placement in ALL JV and Novice Divisions will be random (other than respecting the JV strikes). In Varsity PF, judge assignments will be random in Prelims and will be adjusted in elims only for diversity purposes, which includes having panels with mixed judging experience, among other considerations. In Varsity Policy and LD the pref standard is 1-1, 2-2, 3-3, 2-3, 1-2, 4-4, 3-4 in prelims and the maximizing of mutuality in elims, along with a positive attempt to place diversity enhancing judges, while not unfairly over-using them.

6) I have no item for this number at the moment, but it will serve as a place holder for the thing I know I forgot, whatever that turns out to be.

Thanks for reading and thanks for considering the Lexington Winter Invitational!

Kaz, Janet and the Lexington Debate Family