ACPS students earn 15 medals at civics, debate tournament 

Lincoln Middle School first-place winners at the FSDI competition include (from left) (l-r) Michael Huan, Joel Cardenas and Maggie Gao and coach Marna Weston.
Lincoln Middle School first-place winners at the FSDI competition include (from left) (l-r) Michael Huan, Joel Cardenas and Maggie Gao and coach Marna Weston.
Courtesy of ACPS

Alachua County Public School (ACPS) middle and high school students brought home 15 prizes from the Florida Civics and Debate Initiative held on April 20.  

Local teams earned both first and second place in the policy team debate category. Eastside’s Edrian Colburn-Deliz and Sanibil Wajid captured first place in the high school and overall Policy Debate division, and Lincoln Middle School’s Joel Cardenas and Michael Haun earned first and second place for the division. 

Oak View Middle School's Michaela George took first place at the FSDI competition.
Courtesy of ACPS Oak View Middle School’s Michaela George took first place at the FSDI competition.

Maggie Gao, also at Lincoln Middle, won the informative speaking category. Michaela George of Oak View Middle won the extemporaneous debate category. Newberry High’s Audrey Ellenburg won the varsity impromptu speaking category. 

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The tournament comes after the inaugural National Civics and Debate Championship a few months ago. At the event, ACPS’s Ann Moywaywa, of Lincoln Middle, earned gold in the middle congressional debate, middle extemporaneous debate, middle impromptu speaking and was named overall champion for the middle school division. 

Marna Weston, the Lincoln Middle and Eastside High speech and debate coach, was selected as a 2024-2025 Policy Topic Fellow for the National Speech and Debate. She’ll help craft the topics for future competitions.  

ACPS competitors from the Florida Civics and Debate Initiative also include: 

  • Avinoor Jutla, Lincoln Middle – 2nd place, Middle Extemporaneous Speaking  
  • Nora Duffield, Gainesville High – 3rd place, High School Declamation  
  • Isabella Applegate, Oak View Middle – 3rd place, Middle Impromptu Speaking  
  • Peter Moywaywa, Eastside High – 4th place, High School Declamation  
  • Lyndon Saylor Cravero, Oak View Middle – 4th place, Middle Congressional Debate  
  • Mia Yu, Lincoln Middle – 4th place, Middle Original Oratory  
  • Maxwell Xu, Lincoln Middle – 4th place, Middle Oral Interpretation  
  • Jessica Zou, Lincoln Middle – 5th place, Middle Informative Speaking  
  • Ann Moywaywa, Lincoln Middle – 5th place, Program Oral Interpretation  
  • Kindred Tookelopez, Gainesville High – 6th place, High School Declamation 
Eastside's first-place winners at the FSDI competition included (from left) Edrian Colburn-Deliz, coach Marna Weston and and Sanabil Wajid.
Courtesy of ACPS Eastside’s first-place winners at the FSDI competition included (from left) Edrian Colburn-Deliz, coach Marna Weston and and Sanabil Wajid.
Newberry High School's first-place winner was Audrey Ellenburg (left) with NHS principal James Sheppard.
Courtesy of ACPS Newberry High School’s first-place winner was Audrey Ellenburg (left) with NHS principal James Sheppard.

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