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Welcome to Quo Vadis Speech & Debate Club!

Our mission statement: Provide an opportunity for students to develop skills in public speaking and debate so that they can communicate effectively in a manner that glorifies God.


     Dana & Adela Gottfried ([email protected] and [email protected])


CLUB REGISTRATION:  OPENS:  May 24 and CLOSES:  July 16.  No late registrations. We ask that the family's oldest child be at least 12 by 9/1/21 to join.  Sorry, registration is now closed.  We plan to open registration for next year around May 2022.


For Fall 2021, we will meet on Mondays from 10:30am - 2:30pm, August 23 - December 13 (no class on Labor Day and November 22).

NEW LOCATION: We meet at Kossuth Street Baptist at 2901 Kossuth St, Lafayette, IN 47904

We have a variety of activities for the whole family to work on communication skills.

Visitors are always welcome!

Schedule for Fall 2021

  10:30am-12:00pm 12:00-12:30pm 12:30-1:30pm 1:30-2:30pm
4-8 yr old Beginners Speech   GYM Play Time
9-11 yr old Junior Speech LUNCH GYM/Pre Debate Play Time
12- up Speech   TP/LD Debate



Below is information about Quo Vadis that you need to know. BEFORE YOU REGISTER please read all the way to the end. This information will help you decide the classes that are the best fit for your child and help there to be less confusion on the first day of club. THANK YOU!

FEES TO JOIN:  $25 PER FAMILY for operating expenses.  Please pay the first week of club.

 MANDATORY Requirements:

  • Parents and students attend the club faithfully and children come ready to participate!
  • Check your email faithfully.
  • Read and agree to our Statement of Commitment and Statement of Commitment to Biblical Conflict Resolution. (Found below)
  • Read and understand our Statement of Faith (Found below)

Expectations & Philosophy:

· This is a club for families who are serious about developing effective communicators.  This is NOT just a speech class.  While you can give high school speech credit after your child completes our club season, you will be frustrated if you come into the club expecting a speech class.  The club time will be used primarily for practice and critiquing.  While some instructions will take place, the majority of the time students will be speaking, doing activities, or watching other speeches.  Debate will be more of a traditional classroom setting through about 1/2 of the semester.  At that time, class debates will begin.  However, even in the classroom in debate, the lecture is supplemented with activities.

· Your oldest child attending club should be at least 12 by September 1 of the current school year.

· Club members can be in speech and/or debate.  

· At least one parent must be in club with their student(s) the entire time their student(s) are there. Students do well when their parent comes to club and learns with them.  If you have an extenuating circumstance that makes this difficult, please contact us to discuss this before signing up. Do not sign up if you cannot commit to being there with your student(s).

· Since this is a club, we will be working very hard to build teamwork and a feeling of belonging.  More experienced students will assist newer students.

· This club is a Christian communicators’ club.  Please know that all leadership and teachers (including students who are in a coaching position) must sign their agreement with our Statement of Faith. Also, all teaching will be with the goal to develop effective communicators for the cause of Christ, not just polished speakers.

· As a club, we will encourage competition by attending NCFCA tournaments, which begin in January each year and run through June.  Competition is not an end of itself, but it is a VERY effective tool to develop skills.  Of course, whether a student competes at tournaments must be for the parents to decide.

 · If there is child care available, parents may be asked to help with the supervision of the little ones.  We rotate through this responsibility.  However, the goal is for parents to be with their students as much as possible.



BEGINNER: Ages 4 – 8:   Provides a fun way for younger students to become comfortable speaking using games, show and-tell, and other fun activities.

JUNIOR SPEECH: Ages 9 – 12:  Focuses on becoming comfortable with short speeches. Students are taught about the basics of a well written speech.

SPEECH 1: Ages 12 & 13 - an introduction to speaking that will require students to prepare small assignments before attendance each week. These will include written work and short speaking assignments early in the semester and longer ones later. Each student will receive a binder that includes a syllabus, class materials, and space for them to organize their assignments.

 SPEECH 2: Ages 14 & up (For 14 yr old and older students new to speech or those graduating from SPEECH 1) SPEECH 2 focuses on speech basics – choosing subjects, outlining, and basic presentation skills including posture, gestures, and expression. Students will be expected to complete assigned work prior to attending each week. This work is likely to include not only written work and speech practice but also watching specific speeches posted on the Internet. Less experienced students will be paired with more experienced ones to facilitate learning during class. Each student will receive a binder that includes a syllabus, class materials, and space for them to organize their assignments.

 SPEECH 3: Ages 14 & up (For students who have completed SPEECH 2) – SPEECH 3 students will focus on becoming a polished and more advanced speaker. Each student will mentor a beginning student; each advanced student will be responsible for helping, encouraging their speech partner. Come willing to be an example not simply a student. Each student will receive a binder that includes a syllabus, class materials, and space for them to organize their assignments.

 Student Coaches (Students who have been completed 2 years of QV & by invitation only) Student coaches will be STRONGLY encouraged to participate in the weekly speaking assignments, but won’t be required, especially if they are working on special speeches assigned them. The student coaches will be presenting the various kinds of competition speeches for the first time speakers. They will also help coach the newer speakers and each other in speeches during club time.

Speech Materials

JUNIOR SPEECH and SPEECH 1:  We’ll be using a required curriculum written just for this age group and just for Quo Vadis! Each student will receive a syllabus and class materials. Please provide binder for them to organize their assignments.

 SPEECH 2 and 3: Ages 14 & up – We will be using new curriculum written for these groups in Quo Vadis. Each student will receive a syllabus and class materials. Please provide binder for them to organize their assignments.

Click HERE to see examples of types of speeches the 12yr old and up will be writing/giving.  (The link takes you to the NCFCA page.)



Pre-debate Group

Instructor:  Jenni Minich

If your child is 11 or 12 (or 13 and the idea of debate is overwhelming), then your child might benefit from joining this group.  This fun group will stress learning logic and research skills and take part in light-hearted debates on subjects students of this age will enjoy.  This is a prep course for taking debate in the future and will do some joint activities with the older debaters to acquaint them with the world of competitive debate. The Pre-debate group will use The Fallacy Detective by Hans Bluedorn. This book is required and can be purchased from for around $17.

Team Policy (TP) Debate

Instructor: James Labadorf

During a round of Team Policy Debate, a team of two debaters will advocate the resolution by proposing a specific plan to accomplish the goal stated in the resolution while another team of two debaters will oppose the topic. Public policy debate is about matters of public policy such as might be debated in a legislative setting or a community meeting. A winning debate team will clearly present a problem and provide a plan to solve this problem. (or clearly show that what their opponents presented isn't a significant problem or that their plan will not solve the problem). Everything in debate must be backed by reliable evidence. Definitions of terms are often important.  

Novice debate and advanced debate: Once the novice debaters have covered all of the material, they will begin debating during club time. We also will write a complete debate case in class together. Often we will pair a novice with an experienced debater. Please don’t be hesitant to debate because you don’t know who your partner would be. People can pair up differently for different club debates and tournaments. Debaters should plan on spending 30 minutes a day to prepare for the weekly club meetings. Please also know that there is a mandatory evidence sharing ring for all policy debaters. 

LAST SEASON'S NCFCA Team Policy Debate Resolution (2020-2021): Resolved: The European Union should substantially reform its immigration policy.

THIS SEASON'S NCFCA Team Policy Debate Resolution (2021-2022): Resolved:  The United States Federal Government should significantly reform its policies regarding convicted prisoners under federal jurisdiction.

Lincoln Douglas (LD) Debate

Instructor: Sue Dykstal

Lincoln-Douglas debate resolutions are constructed to create a clash of competing values rather than the adoption of a specific policy. This is an individual (vs. team) event. Instead of presenting and solving a specific problem, as is done in policy debate, LD debate deals with valuing one concept over another concept. A winning participant may present evidence but (s)he will define his/her value, present its major premises, and give justification to convince the judge that their value should be given precedence over the opponent's value.

LAST SEASON'S NCFCA Lincoln Douglas Resolution (2021-2022): Resolved: In democratic elections, the public’s right to know ought to be valued above a candidate’s right to privacy.

THIS SEASON'S NCFCA Lincoln Douglas Resolution (2021-2022): Resolved:  In the context of innovation, the proactionary principle ought to be valued above the precautionary principle.

The coach’s personal recommendation is that LD debate should be for debaters who have had at least 2 years of policy debate or for older students (16 or older).  Younger students may be successful if they:

1) understand basic argument structure, 2) are well-versed in history/social studies and government, 3) have practiced identifying logic and lack thereof and 4) can think abstractly.

Mrs. Dykstal recommends the following for LDers:

An Introduction to Value Debate by Seth Halvorson and Cherian Koshy at is a document online that may be legally printed for educational use.  This is my favorite explanation with clear illustrations of value debate for beginners.  Students should read this in preparation for our first meeting.

Additional Debate Sources – The NCFCA provides samples cases for Team Policy and Lincoln Douglas Value Debate in documents they call source books. These materials can be downloaded after affiliating (purchasing a membership) in NCFCA. These are highly useful for novice debaters and give experienced debaters ideas for cases.



We encourage our students to compete because this is the fastest way to get in the required practice to actually develop these skills. In addition, there's nothing like being judged to encourage students to strive for excellence. Finally, tournaments are fun. Students make homeschooled friends from around the Midwest.

Students must be 12 years old by September 1 of the school year to compete in most tourneys for the next season that runs from late fall through Nationals, which takes place during June. There are a few tournaments for children younger than 12. The competitions in which our students compete are governed by a national league called National Christian Forensic and Communications Association (NCFCA). Some tournaments are sanctioned by NCFCA and are thereby considered "qualifiers" which allow competitors to "qualify" for Regionals/Nationals. Competitors must be members of NCFCA to compete in these tournaments. Other competitions are considered "practice" tournaments and are hosted by local forensics clubs. These still typically follow NCFCA rules and regulations.




Statement of Commitment: 

I realize that Quo Vadis is a club that requires active participation on the part of all members for the benefit of individual students and the group as a whole and accept responsibility for that participation from my family.

PLEASE - do not register your family if you won’t make it a priority to regularly attend and have your students do their homework. 


Statement of Commitment to Biblical Conflict Resolution:

While we don’t expect to be rife with conflict, we do know that because we are a group of sinners, there will be conflict. Since our goal is to become effective communicators for Christ, we think it is imperative that we handle all communication in a way that will glorify God. Conflicts can make this seem impossible. We ask all club families to commit to the following conflict resolution:

As people reconciled to God by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we believe that we are called to respond to conflict in a way that is remarkably different from the way the world deals with conflict.1 We also believe that conflict provides opportunities to glorify God, serve other people, and grow to be like Christ.2

Therefore, in response to God's love and in reliance on his grace, we commit ourselves to respond to conflict according to the following principles: 

Glorify God — Instead of focusing on our own desires or dwelling on what others may do, we will rejoice in the Lord and bring him praise by depending on his forgiveness, wisdom, power, and love, as we seek to faithfully obey his commands and maintain a loving, merciful, and forgiving attitude.3

Get the Log out of Your Eye — Instead of blaming others for a conflict or resisting correction, we will trust in God's mercy and take responsibility for our own contribution to conflicts—confessing our sins to those we have wronged, asking God to help us change any attitudes and habits that lead to conflict, and seeking to repair any harm we have caused.4

Gently Restore — Instead of pretending that conflict doesn't exist or talking about others behind their backs, we will overlook minor offenses or we will talk personally and graciously with those whose offenses seem too serious to overlook, seeking to restore them rather than condemn them. When a conflict with a Christian brother or sister cannot be resolved in private, we will ask others in the body of Christ to help us settle the matter in a biblical manner.5

Go and be reconciled — Instead of accepting premature compromise or allowing relationships to wither, we will actively pursue genuine peace and reconciliation—forgiving others as God, for Christ's sake, has forgiven us, and seeking just and mutually beneficial solutions to our differences.6

By God's grace, we will apply these principles as a matter of stewardship, realizing that conflict is an assignment, not an accident. We will remember that success in God's eyes is not a matter of specific results, but of faithful, dependent obedience. And we will pray that our service as peacemakers will bring praise to our Lord and lead others to know His infinite love.7


  1. Matt. 5:9; Luke 6:27-36;Gal. 5:19-26.
  2. Rom. 8:28-29;1 Cor. 10:31-11:1; James 1:2-4.
  3. Ps. 37:1-6;Mark 11:25; John 14:15; Rom. 12:17-21;1 Cor. 10:31; Phil. 4:2-9;Col. 3:1-4;James 3:17-18;4:1-3;1 Peter 2:12.
  4. Prov. 28:13; Matt. 7:3-5;Luke 19:8; Col. 3:5-14;1 John 1:8-9.
  5. Prov. 19:11; Matt. 18:15-20;1 Cor. 6:1-8;Gal. 6:1-2;Eph. 4:29; 2 Tim. 2:24-26;James 5:9.
  6. Matt. 5:23-24;6:12; 7:12; Eph. 4:1-3, 32; Phil. 2:3-4.
  7. Matt. 25:14-21;John 13:34-35;Rom. 12:18; 1 Peter 2:19; 4:19.

Adapted from The Peacemaker: A Biblical Guide to Resolving Personal Conflict. © 1997, 2003 by Ken Sande. All Rights Reserved.

By registering for club, you are agreeing that your family has read the conflict resolution and agree to abide by these guidelines.



Agreement with our Statement of Faith is preferred, but not required. However, if you want to teach or have your child coach others, you must agree to the Statement of Faith.

Statement of Faith:

  • The Bible, in the original autographs, is divinely inspired, infallible inerrant, and authoritative in all matters of faith and conduct.
  • God has existed from all eternity in three persons, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.
  • Jesus Christ was God coming in human flesh, being fully God and fully man, except without sin.
  • All men are in violation of God’s righteous requirements and His holy character by nature and act; and are therefore under His wrath and just condemnation.
  • The central purpose of the coming of Jesus Christ was to pay the penalty of man’s sin through His substitutionary death on the cross – the successful accomplishment of which was attested to by His subsequent visible, bodily resurrection from the dead.
  • Salvation is offered as a gift, free to the sinner.
  • This gift must be responded to in individual faith, not trusting in any personal works whatsoever, but the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ alone.


Congratulations! You made it to the end. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us!


REGISTRATION FORM  <----- Click to register. Must Read “Detailed Club Information” above before registering.  SORRY!  The registration deadline has passed, so this form is no longer accepting responses.  Registration for next year will open up at the beginning around May 2022.

PLEASE - do not register your family if you can’t make it a priority to regularly attend and have your students do their homework.