By Geoffrey Dobbs, Rotary Club of Brighton North

Bayspeak is a Bayside secondary school public speaking competition facilitated by the Rotary Clubs of Brighton, Brighton North, and Sandringham with sponsorship from Bendigo Bank. The aim of the competition is to encourage and enhance the public speaking skills of secondary students at all levels.

Based on Wynspeak, the successful model developed by the Rotary Club of Hoppers Crossing, the competition will have two sections: Junior (years 7-9) and Senior (years 10-12). Prize money will be awarded to the individual winners and runner-ups in each section of the competition. In addition, perpetual trophies will be awarded to the winning schools in each section.

The students competing this year are from: Firbank, Star of the Sea, Brighton Grammar, St. Leonards, Haileybury and Brighton Secondary.

The preliminary competitions will be held at Brighton Grammar, starting 6pm on Tuesday 11th and Tuesday 18th May. The final of the competition will be held at Firbank on Wednesday 2nd June.

The aim of both Wynspeak and Bayspeak is to support schools with the preparation of their students with the necessary skills to be effective, confident public speakers to aid their future career development. The amazing success of this public speaking program is evident by the considerable expansion of the project in Melbourne’s western region and now Bayside—something Rotary clubs in other areas may find of interest.

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