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CHAC commended at Ethics Olympiad

CHAC commended at Ethics Olympiad

Author: Barbara Mossman
Author Role: Head of Gifted and Enterprise Education

Last Friday, two teams of Year 8 and 9 students proudly represented CHAC at the Middle School Ethics Olympiad 2020. In their first year of competition, our Year 8 (Team Blue) team placed 5th in Queensland, and both teams performed well enough to earn honourable commendations from judges. Congratulations to: Team Brown (Thomas Wood, Lil Biasibetti, Kaya Lurie, Samuel Paech and Dominik Beveridge), Team Blue (Toby Chippendale, Sidney Marshall, Ruby Armstrong, Callie Bannister, Mischa Mossman-Postula) and reserves Amelie Borman, Ryan Glennon and Lara Bauer.

The Ethics Olympiad aims to encourage thoughtful and mutually respectful discourse about real-world ethical dilemmas and is similar to a Philosothon in format.

This year the event was run online due to COVID-19, but this only served to broaden the pool of schools involved. To train, a squad of CHAC students prepared for the competition by meeting at lunchtime in the month leading up the event to discuss ethical cases, learn about a range of different schools of philosophical thought and familiarise themselves with the highly structured format.

Student Perspectives…

The Middle Schools Ethics Olympiad is a fantastic opportunity which I would highly recommend. Last Friday I had the pleasure of competing in one of the two teams of five representing CHAC. Teams are presented with a case and have to communicate their opinion in a discussion with another team. While it is similar to debating, it is a much different environment. It is a highly respectful competition and at the end of the day, both teams can have the same view, the only difference, the way you support your perspective. These cases are not small issues; they are relevant, world-changing problems, for example, the repatriation of foreign fighters, no-platforming on university campuses and the ethics of mass quarantine. Personally, this competition has opened my eyes to international problems which I hadn’t previously been aware of. I have also learnt valuable skills such as speaking clearly and concisely in front of people and considering viewpoints other than my own. This is an experience I have treasured and look hope to do again. Mischa Mossman-Postula, Year 8

During this term, I had the pleasure of competing in the Middle School Ethics Olympiad. The weekly lunchtime trainings leading up to the Olympiad consisted of reflecting, discussing and presenting positions on different cases, many of which were especially relevant to this year. These positions were supported by the ethical reasoning, moral reflection and philosophical thinking that Ms Mossman and Mrs Hodges helped us to cultivate. The day of the Olympiad was one of the highlights of the experience, as our teams had the opportunity to engage in conversations with other schools using our newly developed knowledge of philosophical thought and ethical theory. Additionally, the day of the Olympiad was a great bonding opportunity for my team, as we spent a day learning how to work together and learning more about one another. Overall, the Ethics Olympiad was an enriching experience that I am grateful to have been a part of and would like to thank Ms Mossman along with Mrs Hodges for helping my teammates and I develop our philosophical reasoning and knowledge. Callie Bannister, Year 8

Two CHAC teams competed in the online 2020 Middle School Ethics Olympiad and both teams had a great experience. We were challenged to discuss diverse topics focused on ethics. This enabled us to have some very in-depth and respectful conversations with other teams. Adjudicators dialled in from around the world, adding a layer of global thinking and an educated perspective to the event. Our CHAC culture already encourages inclusion of varying viewpoints, and this ensured the event was well suited to us and will be in years to come. Kaya Lurie, Year 9