International Public Policy Forum World Champions!

Our very own Seamus, Benjamin Small, Patrick, Aidan, Ben Mione and Sharon are the #1 High School Public Policy Forum team in the World!!! They won the $10,000 grand prize at the 16th Annual Brewer Foundation/New York University International Public Policy Forum (IPPF) Finals!

Seamus, Aidan, Sharon, Patrick, Ben and Ben began this competition along with 219 other high school teams from around the world last September to debate the resolution:  The obligation to provide refugees safe haven should outweigh a government's right to control its borders. The first cut was made to the top 64 teams on the basis of a 2800 word written debate teams submitted. These 64 teams then volleyed papers back and forth in a series of debates. The field was narrowed to 32, then 16 and then the "Elite 8" was announced and invited to come to New York to orally debate the final rounds.  

Patrick, Ben Small and Ben Mione first argued against Taiwan in the quarterfinals, against North Allegheny in the semifinals and then beat China to win the whole competition! 

Yale Osterweis

11 of our debaters attended Yale's Osterweis debate competition this weekend: Kyle, Brendan, Piper, Sia, Aidan, Marlah, Meghana, Oliver, Ben Small, Benjamin Upperton, and Benjamin Mione.  Congratulations to Ben Mione and Ben Small who took first place Varsity Team winning all 4 rounds plus then winning their semi-final and final rounds on 3-0 decisions!!! Ben Small won 3rd place Varsity Speaker!! Here's a nice comment from Everett about Ben & Ben's Final Round: They got the definitional argument exactly right. Great job Bens!

Motions were:

Semis:  OPP on This House Believes That Space Exploration Should Not be Pursued by Public Institutions

Finals:  OPP on This House Believes That Environmental Groups Should Commit Violent Acts in Pursuit of their Aims


Westfield traveled with 7 students to the CDA tournament to debate whether internet sites should be required to remove fake news.  Ben Small, Patrick, Brendan, AIdan, Oliver, Piper and Kyle attended and we met other Westfielders there.

Kyle and Piper made it to the Exhibition Round and faced off against Pomperaug.  On a 2-1 decision, they took Second Place Varsity Team and Oliver and Meghana took First Place Novice Team.  Sharon took 3rd place Novice team and Kumar took 6th Place Novice team.  

Piper took 4th Place Varsity Speaker, Kyle took 6th Place Varsity Speaker and Delaney 10th.  Meghana took 2nd Place Novice Speaker,  Kumar took 4th Place Novice Speaker, Oliver took 6th Novice Speaker and Sharon took 8th Novice Speaker.  

Many congrats to all!!

Yale MUN

We had a wonderful Yale MUN Conference!  For 4 days, the kids discussed and debated big ideas with 1400 students from around the world.  Our team of:  Kay-Lin, Seamus, Aidan, Ariel, Oliver, Ben Manus, Eva, Ben Mione, Marlah, Piper and Patrick represented our school so well.   This Conference requires a very large amount of logistical coordination.  We couldn't be prouder of how our kids behaved both inside and outside their committees.  They were mature and helpful and worked as a team which made everything flow very well.

And we met with amazing success!  The highest award in MUN is Best Delegate.  We received 2 which is absolutely incredible for a comparatively small delegation: Both Piper and Patrick got Best Delegate for their committees!!  Ben Mione received an Honorable Mention and Ben Manus and Marlah -- in her first high school MUN Conference! -- got what they called a "Shout Out" to commend their performances.  Ben Manus was in an Ad-Hoc Committee which meant the delegates didn't know their topic until they arrived making it even more challenging.  I always want to add that receiving any awards at a MUN Conference is quite unlikely. Only between 1 and 3% of students at a conference receive them. We are so fortunate at Westfield to receive so many but I want to stress that most students never do and the real prize is getting the opportunity to work together with other high schoolers from around the world to develop these incredibly important skills.


Thirteen Westfielders attended the Loomis Debate Tournament:  Gabi, Ben Upperton, Anish, Ryan, Meghana, Kumar, Piper, Kyle, Delaney, Maxwell, Ben Mione, Ben Small and Patrick.  They debated the viability of school vouchers.

Patrick won First Place Advanced and qualified to attend the World High School Debating and Public Speaking Competition in Australia!!  His partner, Ben Small took 3rd Place Advanced.  This is even more amazing because it was the first time either of them competed in the Advanced Division in this private school league.  They went against students from many schools including: Andover, Deerfield, Choate, Loomis and Exeter.

Meghana and Kumar took 3rd Place Novice team and the 4-person team of Patrick, Ben Small, Delaney and Maxwell took 3rd Place 4-Person Advanced team!

Other highlights:

  1. Delaney took First in the Room in each of the 3 rounds.
  2. It was Ryan's first competition.  He is an 8th grader and he got 2 First in the Rooms.
  3. Kyle took 2 First in the Rooms and he and Piper won all three rounds. 
  4. It was Gabi's first competition and he did very well.