El Cerrito High School Speech and Debate Team

For over fifty years the El Cerrito High School Forensics program has introduced new students to high school speech and debate, and sent students to compete in league, state and national tournaments. Our philosophy is to support all students who are interested in exploring the various types of speech and debate events, not only those who excel and who make speech or debate the main focus of their high school activities. At ECHS, speech and debate are after-school activities and the program depends heavily on parent involvement and volunteer coaches. It receives no financial support from the District. One of the strengths of the program is the fact that more experienced students mentor and advise new students; this builds confidence, research and organizational skills, and strong camaraderie.

If you are a student joining the program for the first time, or the parent of a first-time student, you may feel alarmed by Forensics terminology, confused by the types of events available, and uncertain about the relationship between the program and ECHS. The information on this website is intended to orient you and give you practical information about the team, expectations, contact information, the practice schedule, the tournament schedule, and links to all the forms that are required to be submitted by parents or students.

If you are a returning student or the parent of a returning student, this website includes important updates on the information in last year’s handbook. This year we are not producing a handbook; everything that was in the handbook is now on this website.

Welcome to the El Cerrito High School Speech & Debate Team for the 2017 – 18 school year. Join us for our 68th year, whether as a student participant, parent, guardian, friend, volunteer or financial supporter.


Further Information

Required Forms

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You can support our team when shopping at Amazon by starting with these links. If you use these links to get to Amazon, then Amazon will pay a percentage of your purchase total to the team. (see here for info about bookmarking these and about Amazon Smile)

The ECHS Speech and Debate Team thank Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) for their generous financial support of the team for the 2016-17 academic year. PG&E’s support has made it possible for the team to obtain additional coaching services to help team members improve their skills, participate in an expanded number of tournaments, acquire copyrighted materials for students to use in speech events, and update and improve the team’s website.