Bond University, High School Mooting competition

Standing before two judges, arguing a Civil case to be determined by the principles of Contract Law can be a challenging experience for a young barrister, yet six of our Year 11 students did precisely this on 11 May at Bond University on the Gold Coast in the High School Mooting competition. This year, 76 teams from around Australia entered the competition; 8 will go through to the Finals on 3 June. In teams of three, our students took on the roles of Senior Counsel, Junior Counsel, and Solicitor; they studied a set Moot problem and two related cases (one in the Supreme Court of NSW, the other in the High Court) in their designated roles of Appellant or Respondent.

Team 1: Demi Markakis (Year 11), Isabel Gray ( Year 11) and Pia Graham (Year 11); and Team 2: Isabelle Gough (Year 11), Alexandra Thoms (Year 11) and Isabelle Binsted (Year 11) trained diligently each Monday morning at 7.30am in order to ensure that they had detailed knowledge of the cases. The Mooting experience, support, and encouragement of their coach, Nakita Wilson (School Captain ’13) proved invaluable to our students. The judges praised our students for their strong knowledge of statute and case law, the clarity of their legal argument, and their strong teamwork.

Although many Mooting students have Debating experience, the differences between the content and style of argument are significant. However, all students who are interested in taking up Mooting next year should do so as, like Debating and Public Speaking, it promotes personal confidence and sharpens analytical skills. Those who take part in the High School Mooting competition through Bond University are also eligible to apply for the Judge John Newton Mooting Scholarship. Interested students and parents should enquire further about this through our Careers Counsellor, Ms Pauline Van der Poel.

Such was the commitment of our Mooting students this year, that they could be heard rehearsing their Appearances and Submissions on the plane on the way to the Gold Coast. Surrounding passengers wished them luck in the competition as they disembarked. Even more astounding is the fact that only a week earlier, several of these students had just finished taking part in the Senior School Play, suggesting that strong involvement in the co-curricular life of the School is personally enriching and rewarding for students during the adolescent years.

Ms Mary-Anne Keratiotis, Head of Debating