The two competing teams, Blackheath Bluecoats School, Greenwich and St Angela's Ursuline School, Newham, won their place in the final by competing against teams from 113 schools from across the UK.
The motion for this year’s final was ‘This house would ban countries with poor human rights records from participating in international sporting events’. After some very animated discussion from the students and some tough scoring decisions by the judges, the winning team was announced as St Angela’s; also the reigning champions from last year. The winning team argued the opposition, that countries shouldn't be banned.
Christofer Habig, Deutsche Bank’s Global Head of Brand Communications and Corporate Citizenship, was on the judging panel and proudly presented the cup to St Angelas. Speaking at the event, he said: “Deutsche Bank is delighted to support Debate Mate's biggest competition, the culmination of weeks of debating in participating schools. The skills learnt through debating, from confidence to communication and critical thinking, are invaluable in the professional world and we are proud to help more young people build up this kind of experience.”
As part of Deutsche Bank’s commitment to social mobility, employees have had the opportunity to assist Debate Mate mentors in school debating clubs since 2011. The Bank has a proven track record of investing in education, social investments, art and music projects, sustainability and employee engagement initiatives throughout the UK. Social mobility offers a number of commercial benefits to Deutsche as a leading global bank. Attracting and retaining a diverse workforce allows the Bank to compete more effectively, making it integral to its success.
Debate Mate works in some of the country’s most challenging state schools, in areas of high child poverty. Its core programme consists of after-school debating clubs led by inspirational mentors who are students at some of the UK’s top universities, including Oxford, the LSE, Manchester and Bristol. The programme, which lasts 16 weeks, is targeted at students aged 12-15 years and since the charity started four years ago, it has supported over 10,000 young people.
Jeremy Quin, Deutsche Bank and Cup winners,
St Angela's Ursuline School
Christofer Habig, Deutsche Bank Co-Chair judge,
congratulating the winning team
Jeremy Quin and Lewis Iwu, Co-Chair judge
Photographs: Annabel Moeller