A DEBATING team from Coláiste Pobal Osrai in Kilkenny made it to the quarter-finals of the Concern Debates national competition, where they narrowly lost out to a Dublin school.
They were defeated last week in Portlaoise by Ardscoil Ris, following a spectacular run of form in this year’s competition. In the debate, the Kilkenny school were proposing the motion that ‘The Irish media is fair and balanced in reporting Africa’.
To get to the quarter-finals, Coláiste Pobal Osraí battled against five opposing schools, winning on each occasion.
It is the first time ever for the 100–student Gaelscoil to take part in the competition, which has been running for 28 years. This year, 120 schools from all over Ireland entered the competition.
The Coláiste Pobal Osrai team was Liam Ó Foghlú, Seán Ó Cinnéide and Fionn Ó hÁrgáin, sixth year students, and Rachel Ní Bhriain and Keire Ní Mhurchú, both in fifth year. They will now travel to the Concern Debates national final on May 17, where they will be awarded trophies by Concern CEO Tom Arnold for their achievement in reaching the quarter-finals.
The competition finals take place at UCD on Thursday, May 17. The national winners will be awarded a study visit to one of the countries where Concern is working. Last year’s winners visited the Concern programme in Cambodia.