I sat at the back of the room and had to watch for eye contact (do they even have eyes, next time I'm bringing binoculars) and check for a whole list of things including correct use of language, logic and devolopment of topic etc (I was given a ruberik). Whenever I hear that word I'm worried I'll have to move coloured squares into the right position.
The problem, of course, was this 15 students were all winners from their own schools so they were masters. You couldn't eliminate anyone for obvious errors such as mistiming or reading her/his entire speech.
Whenever I judge a contest, whether it's for writing, plays or speeches, I hope that someone stands out as the best because really, many are very good. And in this case so did the other two judges, really nice people--an Oakville city councilor and a consultant for the board--can't find their names in my notes right now.
Here's our unanimous vote for winner: Sabrina Freeas. She spoke on Child Labour and actually gave out brands that employ it. Lucky I can't afford those brands anyway. I wonder if we should all just sew.
Congratulations to Sabrina and Halton Separate Schools for hosting such worthwhile activities.