Mansoor Esfandieyar

Student Body President Iffat Nawsheen delivers an argument in favor of SHS.

Zoya Wazir and Mansoor Esfandieyar

Seminole High School’s Young Politicians club hosted a Seminole vs. Lake Mary debate on Friday, March 9. The debate was open to both SHS and LMHS students, bringing the two rival schools together in hopes of finally answering the age-old question: which school is better?

This debate teams were comprised of prominent students from each school. For instance, SHS was represented in the debate by senior class president Jandrick Castro, student body president Iffat Nawsheen, valedictorian Ryan Lam, and boys volleyball captain Solomon Debose.

“I [was] super excited to be a part of this debate,” said Castro, who is also the Young Politicians president. I think it [was] a good chance for LMHS and SHS students to bond and show some spirit.”

The debate was moderated by senior Justin Jones, Vice President of Young Politicians. Jones asked the debaters to discuss the merits of their respective schools, regarding general school spirit, athletics, academics, and overall experience. The Young Politicians decided to steer clear of topics such as academic integrity, physical characteristics, and the socioeconomic status of the student body.

“In preparation for moderating the debate, I prepare[d] a list of the questions for the SHS and LMHS debaters to answer,” said Jones. “I’m excited to listen to the responses of the debaters and see the result of the debate.”

While some points were agreed upon by both sides, such as SHS’s recent football gains, others were highly controversial. For instance, Lam had several claims to make regarding the academic excellence of SHS in comparison to LMHS.

“The purest way to measure the ability of a teacher is student achievement. It says a lot that out of the three students in the world who have gotten a perfect score on the AP Physics C exam, two [of them] are SHS students,” said Lam during the debate, referring to the recent achievements of senior Sam Li and alumni Jimmy Qin.

However, the LMHS team offered valid counterclaims regarding their own academics and extracurriculars. For instance, LMHS argued that their pre-professional tracks, including pre-law, allow students to be better prepared for the future. Furthermore, LMHS emphasized the success of their speech and debate team, which has competed in places like Harvard University; SHS does not have such a team.

“Lake Mary has amazing academics and we really make sure that students are equipped to pass their EOCs and AP exams. We really nurture the academic performance of all of our students, but especially our freshman,” said the LMHS Student Body President Liz Amat.

At the end of the debate, students from both schools were given the chance to ask their peers questions that they formulated during the discussion.

Through this debate, the Young Politicians club was able to bring together the students of LMHS and SHS in a way that the Friday Night Lights cannot. In doing so, both groups of students were able to discuss their differences, but also realize that they are not as different as they seem.