Education Minister Judges Bermuda College Student Debate

Monday, November 6, 2017

The Minister of Education and Workforce Development, the Hon. Diallo Rabain, JP, MP was invited to judge a student debate on the question “Should Bermuda Do Away with the Middle School System?”  as part of the Bermuda College freshman English class students are required to research a topic and then present their findings in a debate format. 

The Minister of Education and Workforce Development, the Hon. Diallo Rabain, JP, MP who judged the debate along with class instructor, Denise Simons, remarked that the most consistent and well-supported theme was that “middle school allows students time to develop.” 

Minister Rabain said: “Both the proposition and opposition sides made thoughtful and compelling arguments. The side of the proposition, made a passionate and researched-based case against middle schools, referencing the 2007 Bermuda Review of Education (Hopkins Report), and an opinion editorial written by the late Larry Burchall.  The side of the opposition, who supported middle schools made persuasive arguments and held a strong position. I appreciated their discourse on this important educational issue for Bermuda.”

In the end, the side supporting middle schools won out because they provided stronger supporting arguments for their position.  Debater Joi Dyer-Richards anchored her team by arguing that: “Middle school isn’t perfect, but it’s not quite broken,”  Ms. Richards added, “You can relate the purpose of middle school with the role that mangroves play in relation with juvenile fish. Mangroves provide an environment in which they [fish] can grow in a safe environment until they are ready to make their way into the big sea.”