Barkley Forum for High Schools

2023 — Atlanta, GA/US

Judging & Fees


Each school will be responsible for furnishing competent judges in each event in which they participate. Judging requirements pertain to preliminary rounds. All judges are expected to judge in elimination rounds.  All entered judges are expected to be available unless the tab room has been informed otherwise.   If you are in the judging pool and fail to show up for your judging commitment, there will be a penalty assessed by tournament administrators. Also, a judge’s availability must match their commitment (e.g. If a judge is in for 3 rounds and has conflicts for all but 2 rounds, we will charge for a hire for the round that judge is unavailable.).

No inexperienced judges are allowed to cover obligations.  Judges are strongly encouraged to provide a written RFD.

Background Checks: Emory will be conducting background checks for all tournament hired judges, and all judges provided by the schools must have completed a successful background check conducted by the schools.

Entourage Rule: Anyone providing coaching or research support for any contestants in the Pelham Debates, Public Forum, or LD should be entered in the judge pool for a minimum of 2 rounds (4 flights, if applicable) and be available to judge elimination debates.  Anyone providing coaching or research support for any contestants in Congressional Debate must be entered as a judge and available for elimination debates.  If there is a reason someone requires an exception, they should reach out to tournament administrators prior to the tournament for approval. Should a school violate the entourage rule, debaters in LD and Pelham will lose prefs for one round, teams in Public Forum will lose strikes for one round, and schools with Congressional Debaters will be fined the fee for an uncovered judge. 

Judge Entry Deadline/Deadline to Request Hired Judging:  If you wish to hire judging for the tournament, we suggest you request a hire early on  The deadline to enter judges in all events and the deadline to request hired judging is January 14, 2023.

Judge Opt-In:  Judges may opt-in as diversity enhancing. They will be marked on the preference/strike sheet if applicable.  In LD, the tab room will assign unassigned diversity enhancing judges into debates where they would be a 3-3 or better unless that is a bubble round. The tab staff will never publicize or disclose if such a substitution was made.  In addition, if you are a judge who represents a group that is underrepresented in the current landscape of debate and would like to opt in to the elim judge placement system in LD or Public Forum to ensure proportional representation, please email Kara Grant at  We will pay diversity enhancing judges $40 for every elimination round judged beyond their commitment.

Elimination Round Obligation:  All judges are required to judge the first elimination round OR judge one round past the last elimination round in which their school participated (whichever comes last).  Please note that the number of rounds of commitment ONLY applies to preliminary rounds. 

Substitutions: Under no circumstances may a judge give their ballot to another judge without notifying the tabroom.  

    Judging Requirements:

Pelham Debate:  3 rounds per team.  An individual judging Pelham cannot judge anything else during the preliminary rounds. Please have all judges post their paradigm on

Lincoln-Douglas: 3 rounds per entry.  The preliminary rounds are flighted, and one round consists of two flights. An individual judging Lincoln-Douglas cannot judge anything else during the preliminary rounds. Please have all judges post their paradigm on

Speech Events: Minimum 1 full-time judge for every five (5) entries or fraction thereof.  Please mark any students in their first year out of high school on tabroom.

Congressional Debate: One qualified judge per 5 entries or fraction thereof must be provided exclusively for Congressional Debate. Schools with more than 5 entries must indicate at least one judge who can serve as a parliamentarian.  Please let us know (via email at if your judge can serve as parliamentarian.

Public Forum: 3 rounds per team.  The preliminary rounds are flighted, and one round consists of two flights.  An individual judging PF cannot judge anything else during the preliminary rounds. Please have all judges post their paradigm on  All paradigms must align with the Barkley Forum’s commitment to diversity, inclusion, and expectations for competitive integrity.


If your school would like to request a fee waiver, please write Kara Grant at  Please note: if you are due any refund after you have paid, that refund will be processed via check and mailed to your school after the tournament.  

Event Fees:

        Pelham Debate:  $110 per team 

        Lincoln-Douglas:  $95 per singleton

        Speech Events:  $65 per entry slot 

        Congressional Debate:  $65 per entry slot

        Public Forum:  $110 per team

Judging Fees for Hiring Judges (January 14th is the deadline to request hired judges):

        Pelham Debate:  $200 per uncovered team

        Lincoln-Douglas:  $300 per uncovered participant

        Speech Events:  $150 per uncovered judge (per five entry slots or fraction thereof)

        Congressional Debate:  $200 per each uncovered Congress judge (per five entries or fraction

        Public Forum:  $200 per uncovered team

Penalty Fees:

Drops: Any schools making drops after January 20, 2023 will be responsible for their entry fees for dropped entries.   

Missing Judges: $50 per prelim round and $100 per elim round.  If a judge is missing at the round start time and the tab room is required to make a replacement, we will add this fee.  Repeated offenses may result in membership being suspended or a school not being invited to return. 

Judge Name Fee: You will be charged $100 for needing to change the name of a judge, adding a judge, or dropping a judge in Pelham, Lincoln-Douglas, and Public Forum once pref and strike sheets have become active. This policy is solely intended to make the sheets more accurate for students and easier to fill out.

Judge Constraint Fee: If you do not provide the correct information regarding which teams and/or specific contestants your judges cannot judge and we need to replace your judge as a result, we will charge $100 per change in prelims and $200 per change in elims. 

These are the payment methods available: 

  1. Credit card payment
    There is a 3.75% fee for using a credit card to cover our processing fees.  Please 1) email Kara Grant at to ask her to add the processing fee to your invoice then 2) click here and go to“pay now” to process your payment. 

    Bring a check made payable to Emory University to the tournament and deliver it in person on the first day of competition.  Our mail service is challenged!  If you must mail a check, please mail it to this address and alert Kara Grant at that the check is in the mail:

Barkley Forum for Debate, Deliberation, and Dialogue
Emory University
Mailstop 1022-001-1AC
Atlanta, GA 30322

  1. ACH/EFT
    Contact Kara for the procedure if you would like to pay via ACH/Electronic Funds Transfer. 

  1. Cash
    Cash payments will only be accepted if they are paid directly to Kara Grant or Angela Henderson - who will give you a written receipt - on Friday, 1/27.  Only correct change can be accepted.