Think. Communicate. Engage.

Tulsa Debate League

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About Tulsa Debate

Debate prepares students to thrive in the 21st century. Debaters learn how to think critically - to unpack arguments, dissect research, and evaluate choices. They learn how to communicate - to explain complex concepts and articulate them to diverse audiences. And they learn how to engage in the world - to understand multiple perspectives and make an impact on the world. Research shows that debate can dramatically close the achievement gap in urban school districts - debaters are more likely to graduate from high school, meet college-readiness benchmarks and achieve greater cumulative grade point average than their peers.


The Tulsa Debate League is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit supporting students and teachers in Tulsa Public Schools. As an urban debate league, we are dedicated to expanding access to the activity to schools and students who have traditionally lacked access. We organize competitions, fund programs and summer camps, and provide professional development to teachers and coaches.


Get involved! We are looking for donors and volunteers. Click “Get Involved” for more details.

90% of urban debaters graduate on time.

86% of urban debaters enroll in college.

Urban debaters are 80% more likely to graduate from college.


Debate teams from Webster, Langston Hughes Academy headed to national championships

The Tulsa World covered TDL teams going to the Urban Debate National Championship on March 4th.

Tulsa Kids article about TDL

Tulsa Kids Magazine covered TDL in its September issue. ..

Tulsa World covers TDL's success, expansion

In the Sunday, May 20th edition of the Tulsa World, columnist Ginnie Graham finds that the Tulsa Debate League is "reviving this academic extracurricular pursuit." http://www.tulsaworld..

Remembering Gregg Hartney

On Tuesday, October 25th, the Oklahoma debate community lost a powerful voice for debate education. Gregg Hartney, 66, Tulsa Debate League’s program manager, was killed in a car accide..

TDL's growth: by the numbers

Because of donors and volunteers like you, the Tulsa Debate League has grown dramatically. Last year, tournament attendance at TDL-organized tournaments averaged 20 debaters. This year, 92 st..

TDL #3 Results

Our first tournament without Gregg Hartney in the tab room was bittersweet. He would have been so proud of the progress our students have made. On Friday, November 18th, 34 students from five Tuls..

TDL #1 Results

Policy Team Awards Langston Hughes Academy for Arts and Technology - CJ Padillow and ReShayla Tucker East Central High School - Jonathan Duckett and Joshua Tacha Daniel We..

TDL hosts first summer camp

The Tulsa Debate League hosted its first annual summer debate camp at Union's 9th Grade Center this July. Students spent a week at the camp learning how to debate with an emphasis on the year's de..

Volunteers needed for Tournament #2

TDL will host its second tournament at Will Rogers High School on October 28th, 2016. We will need around 50 volunteers who can commit an evening to judging four rounds of debate at the competitio..

TPS student wins nationals in extemporaneous speaking

Booker T. Washington High School senior Micah Cash took home the top prize in US Extemporaneous Speaking at the National Speech and Debate Association's National Tournament in June. This makes Mic..

Students speak about the power of debate

Two TDL debaters, Raeleigh Pulliam and Brian Cain, spoke about how debate has impacted their lives at the May 2nd Tulsa Public Schools School Board meeting. The two students were greeted with appl..

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