• Kyodo

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Japan’s first high school English debate tournament ended Sunday with a team of students from Shizuoka Prefecture winning the cup and the chance to participate in an international contest in July in South Korea, organizers said.

The team from Katoh Gakuen Gyoshu High School took the top spot in the 1st All Japan High School English Debate Tournament among 52 teams, with 206 students taking part from 38 high schools in 17 prefectures, the organizers said.

The first nationwide contest of its kind was held for two days at Gifu Shotoku Gakuen University in the city of Gifu, with two teams at a time engaging in a debate on whether Japan should make English an official language.

The winner was judged on the basis of logical argument and persuasive powers.

Katoh Gakuen argued in favor of the proposition.

A team from Fukiai High School in Hyogo Prefecture came in second place, and a team each from Keio Shonan Fujisawa High School in Kanagawa Prefecture and Ueda Someyaoka High School in Nagano Prefecture were third.

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