After-School Competitive Policy Debate Training

The Baltimore Urban Debate League provides a rich year round program of competitive debate opportunities that introduces young people to a new world of knowledge and discovery. Literally and figuratively debate is life expanding. Debate creates unparralled opportunity for learning inside the classroom walls and beyond. Knowledge is tested and skills are rewarded in monthly competitions that introduce them to kids from across the City and it opens the doors to the discovery of life beyond Baltimore when students travel to debate camps and competitions in cities across the country and the globe.

The Baltimore Urban Debate League sees teachers as our heroes. Dedicated educators inside of our schools are trained as debate coaches and build a debate squad that transforms the classroom and school into an atmosphere of intellectual exploration and high expectation in their in-school and afterschool practices. Students listen carefully, research extensively and practice intently because they perceive how those efforts translate into recognition, acclaim and personal satisfaction. When students take control of their learning experience through debate, the possibilities are limitless.

Local Policy Debate Tournaments

On Saturdays throughout the school year our dedicated students wake up at the crack of dawn to take buses across town to our full day citywide debate competitions. Students compete in three rounds of rigorous debate on local, national and international policy topics. They apply their preparation and research in competions as they are called to debate on both sides of every issue. Each tournament day ends in a celebration of success and learning at our final awards ceremony where students receive medals and trophies for their hard work, dedication and competitive success.

School-based Competition and Workshops

Our high school teams also participate in school based debate workshops that include mini tournaments at the end of the day. This helps a school build interest and helps nervous beginners feel ready for a full Saturday tournament.


National Competition

Experienced debaters have plenty of opportunity to face off with their opponents across the region and across the country. Our high school debaters travel and compete with great success against top debaters from across the U.S. They travel to tournaments high stakes tournaments like the Barkley Forum, Harvard, and the New Jersey invitational.


In the summer students who are new to debate or returning students in our elementary middle and high school debate programs come to the Baltimore Urban Debate League’s own B’More debate camps. Here students are taught by a high caliber faculty of debate coaches as well as alums of BUDL who have gone on to debate in College. Camp is where we build skills, build community and learn about the topic for the next school year. Some of our most advanced high school debaters earn BUDL scholarships to competitive national camps held on college campuses across the country.