From ice water ethics, a for-profit 21st century school, reacting to racist chants and technology’s graveyards to transgender and Medicaid, banning the box and paying a ransom to save your family, five high school teams from Lee, Collier and Charlotte counties will be participating in the First Southwest Florida Regional High School Ethics Bowl. The event will be held from 8:45 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 23 on the Fort Myers campus of Florida SouthWestern State College (FSW).
“In the past, these teams would have to travel to Miami or Tampa to compete,” said Dr. Russell Swanson, a professor of philosophy at FSW and the organizer of the event. “Although this is a competition, the teams do work collaboratively utilizing ethical theories. They have been preparing using the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Parr Center for Ethics bowl cases. There are 15, and for this event, 10 will be selected.”
The five high schools that will be competing are:
Florida SouthWestern Collegiate High School – Charlotte, Punta Gorda
Canterbury School, Fort Myers
Florida SouthWestern Collegiate High School – Lee, Fort Myers
Seacrest Country Day School, Naples
Marco Island Academy, Marco Island
It’s all part of the National High School Ethics Bowl (NHSEB), which for 2015-2016, has 2,700 students on 380 teams, representing 272 schools competing in 29 regionals across 23 states.
Much like a tournament, there is a bracket with two teams paired. A coin toss determines which team goes first, and a moderator reads a question related to one of the 15 cases for the team “A” to discuss and then present. The opposing team “B” then has time to confer, and then comment on team “A”’s presentation on how that position could be strengthened. Team “A” then has time to confer and respond. A three-judge panel will then ask questions of Team A before scoring both teams. Then the process is flipped with a new case and a question for Team B. The team with the higher score advances. The winner of the final round will then advance to the playoffs. The championship will be held April 15-16 at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.
The NHSEB focuses on inclusion of all students from all types of high schools—public, private, charter, magnet, and home-schools. Competition is about coming together and bonding over joint participation in significant and valued activity guided by shared standards.