Life High School Oak Cliff Attends UIL State Cross-Examination Debate Meet

students standing outside
Life High School Oak Cliff debate team

Dallas, TX, April 11, 2023 – Life High School Oak Cliff (LHSOC) had 4 students qualify for the 2022-2023 University Interscholastic League (UIL) State Cross-Examination (CX) Debate Meet. The meet was held at the University of Texas at Austin from March 13-18, 2023.


The students qualified for the state meet by placing first or second place at the UIL District Cross-Examination Debate meet held on January 12, 2023, at Brookhaven College.


“UIL debate competition motivates students and provides them with practical application for the skills they are developing,” said Jana Riggins, UIL State Debate Director. “This year’s debate topic prompted students to research and form their own thoughts and opinions on the real-world issue our government is challenged with: Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase its security cooperation with North Atlantic Treaty Organization in one or more of the following areas: artificial intelligence, biotechnology, cybersecurity.”


This is the first year that LHSOC students were able to attend the CX Debate Meet. In 2020, students from LHSOC advanced to the state meet for the first time, but the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a cancellation of the meet. Senior Dacoda Bonner said, “Participating in CX debate was such an enlightening experience, which allowed me to use my critical thinking skills and participate in an activity that would help me improve my public speaking skills. The competition taught me how to think outside of the box and see things from a different perspective. In the future, I will use these skills to better communicate with people and present solutions to problems that other people are not thinking about.”


Dr. Alissa Russel, Debate Team Coach, said, “This event was so exciting for the students. I believe the experience taught the students social awareness. By having to successfully argue both sides of the issue, students were able to gain knowledge of others’ perspectives. I am so proud of the self-initiative these students took to not only compete successfully but grow as productive individuals. They have gained a set of research and critical thinking skills they will use throughout their life.”