Young People Speak Up

Cirencester Rotary Club was very pleased to sponsor this year's Public Speaking Competition at three local schools, designed to develop the public speaking skills and self-confidence of more than 1500 young people.

Previous participants Kingshill School were this year joined by Deer Park and Farmors Schools and each involved nearly every pupil in years 8, 9, and 10, from which a number from each year were selected by their classmates to go through to the respective school’s final – each of which was attended and judged by Rotary Club members. The standard of public speaking was exceptional and the Rotarian judges were very impressed by the quality and authority of all the speakers in the three finals.

The winning subjects and speakers were: 

·      Kingshill School: Year 8 “My passions” by Finn McKenna; Year 9 “The World isn’t perfect” by Jonnie Gibson; Year 10 “Disability” by Jasmin Wood. 

·      Deer Park School: ar 8 “Nothing is permanent” by James Reglar; Year 9 “Life” by Hazel Scott; Year 10 “Budget cuts in the arts” by Oli Adams. 

·      Farmors School: ar 8 “Chronic conditions” by Eris Brown; Year 9 “Super heroes” by Harrison Darley; Year 10 “Social media” by Jemima Merrington.  

Local Rotarian Chris Rowbotham said, “This annual competition is a great opportunity to help develop the presentation skills of so many young people. Our congratulations go to all the finalists." 

Within three weeks of the individual school finals, all nine prize-winners repeated their speeches at a packed Rotary showcase evening at the Royal Agricultural University, with family members and teachers also present. Certificates and prizes were presented by Rotary President Jim Beaman. He said, “Their confidence and inventiveness in preparing and delivering their speeches was a credit to them as individuals and to their schools. Our Club is very proud to support this annual competition that helps so many young people develop their self confidence and communication skills through the experience of public speaking.”

In addition to the individual prizes, Rotary awards the annual Fred Perkin Cup for the most memorable contribution and this year it went to James Reglar from Deer Park school for “Nothing is permanent”. As Chris Rowbotham explained, “His subject and delivery were particularly memorable and he thoroughly deserved this award.”   

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