Congratulations to Molly Scales (S4) who took part in the final of the Martin Lavery Cup public speaking competition and won!
The Martin Lavery Cup is an annual competition to encourage young people to become better orators and foster excellence in public speaking. It is held by the Glasgow Bar Association. Martin Lavery was a barrister in Glasgow who was renowned for his public speaking skills; this competition has been created to honour his memory.
This year, the competition was open to all schools in the greater Glasgow area. Only six pupils progressed to this final stage that was held in the Glasgow Sheriff Court, having been put through from the preliminary heats held at schools around the city. Each finalist had eight minutes in which to present their speech on a topic of their choice. Finalists other than Molly were pupils from Hucheson's Grammar School, Kings Park Secondary School, St. Aloysius' College, John Paul Academy, and St. Mungo's Academy. The speeches were presented to a panel of judges, an audience of legal professionals, teachers, and supporters.
Molly's winning speech was highly praised by Garvey McArdle, chief judge from McArdle Solicitors. She spoke articulately and passionately about SQA exams and the education system, and how it is wrong to only value learning if it will be on an exam. Molly made a strong case for the power of curiosity and valuing learning itself, as any knowledge gained isn't a waste of time. She compared our education system to more highly rated ones in Finland and elsewhere, making a case for change.