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CHAC win gold at Ethics Olympiad

CHAC win gold at Ethics Olympiad

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

Congratulations to CHAC’s Junior Secondary Ethics Olympiad teams on their tremendous performances at Queensland’s Middle School Ethics Olympiad last week.

Our Year 9 team won the event and were awarded State Gold Medals and have been now invited to represent CHAC, Queensland and Australia in the Australasian Final on February 24 next year, competing against schools from Australia, NZ, Singapore and Hong Kong. The Year 9 team were: Toby Chippendale, Maya Jones, Sidney Marshall, Fionn Espiner and Ruby Armstrong.

Our Year 8 team also performed very well, ranking a respectable sixth place in their first year of competition. The Year 8 team were: Nick Gill, Edward Hambling, Sienna Austin, Poppy Ammundsen and Zhenghao Ou.

Both CHAC teams were awarded Honorable Mentions from judges, performed admirably and loved the chance to discuss ethical cases with other students, aided by a developing understanding of a range of philosophical approaches. Ethical dilemmas explored included whether it is ever okay to lie, the right to public nudity, parental expectations of gender roles and whether some jokes are ethically indefensible.

We would like to thank all students involved in the training squad leading up to the event: Reserves Callie Bannister, Mischa Mossman, Zoe Ammundsen, James Hertweck and also Ryan Glennon, Caitlin Mulquiney and Sienna Still. Thanks too, to staff who assisted with coaching: Mrs Liz Hodges and Mr Aaron Sloper.

Students’ perspectives on the Ethics Olympiad experience…

"On Wednesday Week 6, I was lucky enough to be a team member competing in the Middle School Ethics Olympiad. It was an amazing experience to not only learn to extend my thinking about thought-provoking cases, having to consider ethical stances I would have never earlier considered, but also having to present these cases against schools that could have completely different views to our own. It was a day filled with both fun and quick thinking, and it was something I am so glad I was able to be a part of." Maya Jones, Year 9

"I really enjoyed this experience and found it an insightful way to express ideas and opinions in a respectful and safe environment. It was unlike a debate where you argue against each other. Instead, your team got to choose how to respond and discuss where your moral and ethical views lay. Overall, it was such a fun day and a great opportunity to express opinions calmly and respectfully." Sienna Austin, Year 8

"The Ethics Olympiad is a competition of 'debate-style' ethical discussions between teams. Teams present a certain philosophical view onset cases; however, unlike a debate, both teams are allowed to agree on a position and points are even awarded to teams for being courteous and respectful in rebuttal! The cases were very thought-provoking and made for interesting discussions. I thoroughly enjoyed these discussions as they travelled deeper into the roots of the ethical dilemmas in our society underlying many 'deep' questions about the world in which we live today. Our team ended up placing 6th and were given an honourable mention by the judges, which our team can be very proud of." James Hertweck, Year 8