The Great Falls High School’s Speech and Debate team is more polished and successful thanks to support from the Great Falls Public Schools Foundation.
Grants and fundraising opportunities from the Foundation have helped the 35 member team move further into the digital age. Speakers and debaters now have computers purchased with Foundation grant funds and coaches now pass computer “thumb drives,” full of their topic research to debate opponents. “We look so much more polished,” said long-time coach Keith Davey.
Last year Davey was one of two winners of the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway “Teacher of the Year” award. In recognition Davey was awarded $2,500 which he chose to use for the benefit of his team by providing more research materials.
The speech and debate team also participated in the Foundation’s annual Truck Raffle; team members sold ticket individually and as a group at the State Fair and the Farmers Market. “Everyone wants to buy the tickets from the kids,” said Davey. The team received additional fundraising help from D.A. Davidson employees. In November, the team received $1,977 from their ticket sales effort.
Davey said the raffle money will help defray the cost of acquiring copyright material for background and research, equipment, and presentation easels, year-end awards, and travel to out of town meets. The kids are hoping to travel to Houston for nationals.
The raffle winner for the 2019 Toyota Tacoma, donated by City Motors, was announced at the crosstown football game on Oct. 27, 2018. The fundraiser netted $119,074, of which $67,077 went to student organizations and schools, (student groups and organizations received $6 from every ticket sold), and $51,997 was distributed to the Foundation.