Hockaday School Seeking Full-Time Director of Debate and Forensic Activties

The following is a message from Cathy Murphree, the Assistant Head for Academic Affairs and Provost at The Hockaday School in Dallas, TX.

Available Position: Director of Debate and Forensic Activities

Department: Fine Arts

Date Posted: December 10, 2013

Start Date: August 2013

The Hockaday School is an independent, college preparatory day and boarding school for girls of strong potential and diverse backgrounds who may be expected to assume positions of responsibility and leadership in a rapidly changing world. With an enrollment of more than 1,000 students, The Hockaday School is the nation’s largest pre-kindergarten through grade 12 independent girls’ school. Ranked among the country’s finest college preparatory schools, it was founded over a century ago and continues today to build on its original four cornerstones: Scholarship, Character, Courtesy, and Athletics.

The Hockaday School is seeking a full-time Director of Debate and Forensic Activities, Middle and Upper Schools, beginning with the 2014-2015 school year. Hockaday teachers strongly support single-gender education and understand how girls learn best. They value and respect their colleagues, further School-wide, divisional, and departmental goals, and demonstrate a commitment to the ideals expressed in the Tenets of Faculty Excellence.

Position Description

The Hockaday School Debate program has a strong tradition and has historically earned top ratings and been highly visible at the national level. The successful candidate will lead a program with the following goals: 

• To support students in becoming life-long, persuasive communicators with highly developed skills in listening, argumentation, analysis, and oral delivery

• To allow students to understand and take both sides of an issue while always appreciating the context, the practical realities, and the moral underpinnings of what they argue or present

• To develop students’ confidence to speak up with conviction, advocating for themselves and for others, including those who have no voice

• To promote high standards of research and intellectual preparation that allow each student’s assertions to be made with conviction

• To utilize debate and extemporary speaking skills as preparation for roles of leadership and dedicated community service

• To join other programs in the School in supporting critical thinking, richness of language, the power of rhetoric and effective public speaking, and a passion for philosophical inquiry


The ideal candidate will hold at minimum a Bachelors degree; have several years experience debating or coaching debate with the primary focus of Lincoln Douglas and Public Forum; be willing to travel to local, regional, and national competitions; and have extensive experience coaching and mentoring students while building their confidence and expertise. He/she will be dedicated to and enjoy working with students in and out of the debate classroom and to effective organization of a significant budget, team travel arrangements and communications with parents. The Director will develop and organize a competition schedule and host Hockaday’s Debate Tournament in November. The Director will be assisted by a full-time debate teacher/coach with related duties. 

Hockaday teachers also serve as advisors to small groups of students and are expected to be involved with students in co- and extracurricular activities, as well as in the life of the School community.

Applicants should send a cover letter, a résumé, and references to:

Christi Finegan

The Hockaday School

11600 Welch Road Dallas, TX 75229