Science Park High School’s award-winning debate program featured in NJEA’s Classroom Close-up, NJ

Newark Debate – Newark educator Jonathan Alston demonstrates that debate skills can improve test scores and help students critically read, write and think. Born and raised in Newark where he won two debate state championships, Jonathan went on the Yale University, and last year was selected as the National Debate Coach Association Educator of the Year. Because he proved that debate fit all the common core standards and prepares students for the international Baccalaureate, his administration approved a new initiative that requires every 7th grader to take a debate class. Under his coaching, two students have been on the USA Debate Team and competed internationally.

Science Park High School award-winning debate program was recently featured in NJEA’s Classroom Close-up, NJ. Jonathan Alston, who teaches and coaches the Science Park debate team, says that debate helps students develop high-level skills that are essential to the common core curriculum. Debate is now a required part of the Newark Public Schools’ curriculum starting in 7th grade.

Science Park High School’s debate team has received state and national recognition over the years, winning 20 consecutive state championships. Alston, who was born and raised in Newark, won two debate state championships and went on to study at Yale University. Last year, he was selected as the National Debate Coach Association Educator of the Year. Under Alston, two students have been selected for the USA Debate Team and went on to compete internationally.

Classroom Close-up, NJ is a half-hour television program that features innovative projects in New Jersey public schools. The 14-time Emmy® award-winning show is in its 22nd season and airs on NJTV every Sunday at 7:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; Wednesdays at 11:30 p.m.; and Saturdays at 5:30 a.m. The show is sponsored by PSE&G. The show is the only half-hour program in the country devoted to featuring the positive things happening in public schools. Here you can watch current shows, search for stories that have aired the past two decades, check out the video contest, become a fan, view the photo gallery, and check out the schedule and monthly guide.