Pittsburgh District Tournament

2022 — PA/US

Pittsburgh District Qualifier

for the 2022 National Tournament
Speech and Debate
Pittsburgh, PA
Seton La Salle High School
Pittsburgh, PA
Sat 3/26 Sat 3/26 HSE SEN

Chair:                             Beth Young

Committee Members:     Jess Cerchiaro      Lauren Hess          Ben Edwards     Alison McBee   


Dear NSDA Colleagues:

 t’s again time to begin the process of NSDA District Eliminations to determine who will attend the National Tournament in Louisville KY to represent the Pittsburgh District in speech and debate.  Please read this letter and the Rules and Regulations carefully.  Registration will be through TABROOM.COM – and while many of us are familiar with the site, there are certain requirements for district registration that might make some parts of registration different.

 Patterning our district qualifiers after the national tournament which is planning on being live and in-person, NSDA districts for speech and debate will be live at Marshall Middle School which is part of the North Allegheny School District. And NSDA districts for congressional debate will be live at Seton LaSalle High School, running concurrently with the freshman-sophomore tournament.

 Both of the district tournaments are on Tabroom --- speech and debate on March 12, congress on March 26.  Click on the tab for the events that you want and use that page for registration. 

 ALSO, please note that the deadlines are different for each of the weekends.

The speech and debate deadline is Wednesday March 9.
The congress deadline is Wednesday March 23

 Please type your information on the online form.  Remember that you will be entering all of the ISBN for printed materials for your students; Tabroom will be capturing this information automatically. 

 PRINT ALL the information that you might need for the tournament (e.g single letters of intent, copies of your students’ oratory and informative speeches, etc), and bring the printed materials to the tournament on Saturday March 12.

 Because we are using online balloting for all events, it is critical that all of your judges and students are registered with Tabroom.   All rounds at districts will be live; please see speechanddebate.org to find out about the procedures that will be used at the national tournament.

 The following are listed for your special attention or information:


In all events, we will follow the method that is described in the district manual;  please check the NSDA site for the official manual.

  1. Original Oratories and Informative Speeches must be submitted to the district chair with the single letters of intent.  Oratory scripts must be signed by both the student and the coach under the statement, “This is the original work of the student.”  This is a national rule.  Oratories also need titles.
  2. The judging quota is high in both speech and debate. If you cannot supply the judges, do not supply the contestants. We want your students to compete, but in order for us to have a successful tournament, we need you to provide your judges. There are no judges for hire BUT there are some schools that are not NSDA members.  Seek them out to see if they can help you meet your quota.  Remember, hiring judges from the bigger schools (NA and USC, I think you will agree), does not help the tournament move more smoothly. 
  3. Remember that students MUST HAVE PAID MEMBERSHIPS on record with the NSDA ONE WEEK PRIOR to the contest in order to participate.
  4. Remember that you must have paid your district dues ($40.00) as well as your NSDA national dues in order to compete.
  5. Honor your commitment to have students participate in districts once you register them.
  6. Don’t wait until the tournament day to point out that a student’s speech may not meet NSDA rules.  If you have a reason to question the selection of any student, please address these questions to the District Committee immediately.
  7. An adult must accompany any team attending a district tournament.
  8. The entry fee is $7 per student.  ($14 per team: Duo, Policy and PFD). There is an additional school fee of $10 per school.
  9. Remember that your judges are expected to stay the entire time and judge all the events that are assigned to them. THERE IS NO SWITCHING ASSIGNMENTS. When your students are eliminated, that does not mean that your judges are done. Also please ask your judges to not report to the tab room to ask if they may leave. If judges are excused, we will post this.  
  10. Double entry is permitted between all events, however students may only enter one partnership debate event (Policy Debate or Public Forum). Students may enter in one partnership debate event as partners and in Duo Interpretation as the same partnership. A student may not enter a partnership debate event and a Duo Interpretation with different partners. Please remember to complete and submit a Single Letter of Intent if you are double entering students. (See Tabroom for the form.)
  11. If a school enters two students in each contest category, they may enter two additional students, regardless of their chapter strength, but totaling no more than FOUR entries in each category.
  12. In addition to the district committee there are a few coaches that will be assisting with the running of the qualifiers.  Please check the Tournament Assignments section which will be posted on Tabroom closer to the date of the competition.  If you are assisting, please do not count yourself as a judge.
  13. Please note that NSDA is offering two supplemental spots to non-qualifying students IF your school participates in districts.
  14. Congress legislation is due on Tabroom by Thursday March 17. Please note that you need separate legislation for the House and the Senate!!  Full packets of legislation will be posted on Tabroom on Saturday March 19.
  15. We are accepting nominations for District Student of the Year. . If you would like to nominate someone, please send a letter of nomination to the District Committee at pittsburghnsda@gmail.com  by March 5:    Additional information may be needed if your nominee wins our local award.  Winners will be announced at the March 12 tournament.
  16. We have not heard any information regarding World Schools Debate, but, assuming that registration will be as in the past, we are also accepting self-nominations from interested students who have participated in at least one of the district qualifiers. If things are the same, we will be sending two teams to nationals; teams are composed of students from a variety of schools.  Please send all letters of nomination to pittsburghnsda@gmail.com  by March 10. We generally announce the candidates for the World Schools Debate after the Congressional debate competition, but we ask for your applications early so that we have a sense of the field of contestants who are applying;
  17.  Extemp topic areas  to be used on March 12 are
    International Extemp: 

IX: Africa

IX: Americas & Caribbean

IX: Asia

IX: Energy and Environment

IX: Europe

IX: International Organizations

IX: Southwest Asia & North Africa


US Extemp: 
US: Business & Industry

US: Covid & Healthcare

US: Education

US: Infrastructure

US: Politics & Elections

US: Social Issues

US: Supreme Court & Legal Issues


  1. NSDA is offering a “Last Chance Qualifier” May 5 – 7. Details can be found online.


Please note that we are still checking on any recent changes that the NSDA executive board may have made, but, as of this writing, we believe that all of the information given above is accurate. 

 Thanks for being part of the National Speech and Debate Association

Your District Committee