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Etonbury students are Bedfordshire’s best debaters!

Etonbury Academy has been crowned the best debating team in Bedfordshire after a sterling performance at the Houses of Parliament.

The BEST school was one of three that had reached the finals of a debating competition run by the county’s Police and Crime Commissioner Festus Akinbusoye.

In a highly-competitive contest in the prestigious Grand Committee Room, the team debated a motion about the solution to Britain’s housing shortage with peers from schools in Bedford and Luton.

The judging panel consisting of the PCC, outgoing High Sheriff of Bedfordshire Russell Beard, the region’s Chief Crown Prosecutor Rose-Marie Franton and magistrate Simon Smith, declared Etonbury the winners.

Principal Joanne Young said: “Huge congratulations to our debate team and thank you to Ms Young and Mrs Hume [Head of History Wendy Young and Head of Year 9 Karen Hume] for orchestrating this and supporting them. We are very proud of this achievement and all your hard work.

“It was an amazing opportunity to attend the Houses of Parliament for the final and the team were fortunate enough to have a tour of the House of Commons and stood in the chamber, normally seen on the television!”

Mr Akinbusoye said: “It is our third year of this competition. And somehow each year it gets better. Once again, the pupils have blown me away with their professionalism and passion for debating.  

“I felt speechless after listening to these talented young people. The preparation that has gone into this has impressed me the most. 

“Everyone who took part should be very proud of themselves. I certainly feel privileged to have had the chance to experience this.” 


Picture: Etonbury's winning students in the front row alongside Beds PCC Festus Akinbusoye, and the other finalists and judges behind.