Ready Set Debate!
Ready Set Debate was founded in 2014 with the goal of making debate concepts simpler to understand and more efficient to teach.
Since then, we have educated hundreds of students from all over the world through our in-person and virtual debate clubs, camps, and tournaments. In addition to personalized feedback from coaches and judges, our students receive access to our proprietary training videos, member handbook, and at-home exercises, helping them become proficient in the core skills of debate and demonstrate their skills through success at tournaments.
Our offerings are recommended for students aged 12-17; capable younger students may be admitted on a case-by-case basis. No prior debate experience is necessary, and our students range from beginners to experienced high school debaters. Older and more experienced students serve as peer mentors to younger and less experienced students.
This video features our students aged 11-14, who had started debating only three months earlier. (See more videos here.)
Ready Set Debate members debating the topic: “U.S. public schools should not reopen for in-person teaching until a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 is broadly available.”
Our clubs simulate an academic debate team, with regular meetings at which club members debate assigned topics, receive feedback, and participate in speech exercises.
During the summer, we host a series of five-day camps in which students get the chance to build their debate skills through a series of fun activities, including drills and practice debates.
Throughout the year, we host a series of virtual debate tournaments, which are open to our club members and outside competitors who meet certain requirements.
Why debate?Debate is a fun, accessible, educational activity that makes a difference! Participating in debate teaches many relevant skills, such as persuasive writing, critical listening and thinking, reasoning logically, organizing thoughts, speaking clearly in prepared and extemporaneous contexts, taking notes efficiently, being creative and adapting, collaborating with others, evaluating and adapting to new information, and asking relevant questions.
Hear what our students and families are saying!
Head Coach & CEOPrice T. Morgan is a fifteen-year veteran of speech and debate programs. As a member of the Southern Methodist University IPDA debate team, he won several debate championships, including a 2018-2019 national championship title. Price graduated Phi Beta Kappa with dual degrees in economics and public policy in 2019. He served as Assistant Coach of the SMU debate team in 2021-2022, before leaving to focus on Ready Set Debate full time. He has coached several intercollegiate champion debaters, including an international champion debater. He has also worked as a public health research assistant, film producer, graphic designer, and actor.
Our mission statement
The purpose of Ready Set Debate is to help students become proficient in the techniques of academic debate, and to learn to communicate in a persuasive, respectful way. We place an emphasis on teamwork and courteous, professional, respectful conduct that will enhance social and professional success.
The value of learning debate
“These skills, loosely categorized as elements of emotional intelligence, include the capacity to persevere through setbacks (grit), the facility to bring existing knowledge to a novel situation (creativity), comfort in working with others and knowing when to lead and when to follow (collaboration), the capability to confront the seemingly infinite volumes of information on any topic and select the relevant data (research), and sensitivity to what a target audience is thinking so that such data can be presented persuasively (empathy). The debate curriculum teaches young people much of what they’ll need to know in these areas by active, engaging, and highly direct means.”
Our clubs and tournaments primarily use our own format, which is closest to IPDA and Lincoln-Douglas.
All kinds! In recent semesters, our students have debated everything from the moral permissibility of pineapple on pizza to the most efficient way to address the Medicaid “coverage gap.” Topics are often suggested by students, and are always vetted by coaches to ensure age-appropriateness. See our video gallery for more examples of topics.
Camp participants and club members receive a copy of our proprietary Ready Set Debate Member Handbook, along with companion educational resources including in-meeting and at-home activities and worksheets.
Our coaches are drawn from a pool of experienced current and former college debaters and college coaches. Most of our activities are coached by Price Morgan, the Head Coach and CEO of Ready Set Debate.
In some cases, we are able to offer partial scholarships (based solely on need, not merit) to families who cannot afford to participate in Ready Set Debate activities without financial assistance. For more information, visit our financial aid page.
No. Our instruction is limited to the art of debate, and we welcome students from any religious or political background.
Ready Set Debate members learn and communicate in a persuasive and respectful way. For more information, please see our Student Expectations and Code of Conduct.
Please contact us to discuss whether Ready Set Debate would be a good fit for your under-12 student. Students who are able to grasp the material and keep pace with the other students can generally fit in well, even if they are under 12.
Not at this time. Currently, students may participate in Ready Set Debate activities only until they turn 18.
Interested in getting involved?
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call/text +1 (310) 662-3255.