Communicating with teamsEdit
It’s a good idea for the CA to establish a relationship with teams prior to the tournament, to ensure they arrive fully briefed and happy. The Convenor traditionally issues regular newsletters, but a CA may also send a few e-mails to the mailing list. Things that might be included are:
- Encouragement to read the Rules, Notes for Adjudicators and Definitions Guidelines; with an offer to assist by e-mail if they have questions.
- Introduction of the members of the CAP.
- Explanation of any contentious issues and reminders of decisions taken at the last Council Meeting.
- If a dress code is to be enforced, then judges must be given advance warning, so that they know what to bring.
- If the Convenor isn’t providing calculators for judges, they should be encouraged to bring their own.
Preparing materials for adjudicatorsEdit
As well as confirming the design of the ballots for the Convenor, a CA should also let the Convenor know any requirements for other printed materials for adjudicators. These include:
- The marking standard
- The Rules
- Notes for Adjudicators and Definition Guidelines (frequently forgotten)
- Feedback forms (introduced in 2007)
The CA should also solicit tapes, VCDs or DVDs of previous tournament debates, for use in the adjudicator training and evaluation day. Singapore has been a kind source of these in recent years but many other countries are building up libraries too. They should be obtained in advance so that the CA can choose which ones are appropriate for use and how they will be used.
Training of chairpeople and timekeepersEdit
This may be conducted entirely by the Convenor and his/her team, but is included here as it affects the debating side of the competition.
The CA may conduct workshops in the few days prior to the competition to run through the requirements for chairpeople and timekeepers, and answer any questions either students or teachers may have about the management of debates.
At the very least they should all have been briefed in writing in advance of the rounds. The CA should probably have a look at the Convenor’s briefing documents and ensure that all the latest rule changes and Council recommendations are reflected in the information.
Australia has developed some useful Chairperson’s and Timekeeper’s Guides and these, with amendments, are provided here.