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Council Rock North has 17 Academic All-American students this year and 35 students advancing to 2 separate National Speech and Debate Competition finals, winning both local districts for the second year in a row.

To qualify as an Academic All-American, students must compete for five semesters and earn over 750 competitive points. That point total ranks the student at the top of the state. For Sarayu and Pinelope, who have over 2000 competitive points, that ranks them at the top of the nation. What an amazing accomplishment!

 academic all americans

Academic All-Americans: Sarayu Cheemalapati, Pinelope Donovan, Kali Morton, Misthi Mishra, Kelly Lao, Sophia Chan, Kara Grossman, Grace Ye, Ange Douris, Karen Leifer, Sanika Jain, Shane Wattenmaker, Sam Howe, AugustGrace Young, Sasha Iosava, Khushi Upadhyay, and Justin Unger 

speech and debate students

 For speech and debate, the students compete in two district competitions, leading to separate national competitions. For PCFLs (state), 26 students went to Districts, and 23 advanced to NCFLs (nationals). Twelve students that competed at Valley Forge Districts this past weekend are advancing to NSDA Nationals. Below are the names of the students who earned a place at nationals and what national competition they will attend. CR Students won both districts for the second year in a row. At Valley Forge districts, they took 1st Mock Congress, 1st Debate, 3rd Speech, and 1st Overall, beating out some double national qualifying teams.


NCFL = National Catholic Forensics League

NSDA = National Speech and Debate Association 


Mock Congress 

  1. Sarayu Cheemalapati - NCFLs and NSDA Nationals (double qualified last year as well)
  2. Shane Wattenmaker - NCFLs and NSDA Nationals
  3. Sanika Jain - NSDA Nationals

Policy Debate

  1. Ethan Loh and Kevin Yuan - NCFLs 
  2. Maxwell Eichholz and Alex Tao - NCFLs

Public Forum Debate

  1. Kali Morton and Chris Stockburger - NCFLs and NSDA Nationals (double qualified last year as well)
  2. Sasha Iosava and Saanvi Nimma - NCFLs
  3. Sia Abrol and Shrey Sarangi - worth noting, they missed qualifying by one place 

Lincoln Douglas Debate

  1. Grace Ye - NCFLs
  2. Kelly Lao - NCFLs

Speech Events



  1. Jonathan Grunde-McLaughlin - NCFLs
  2. Aimme Zhang - NCFLs

Dramatic (DI) 

  1. Sam Howe - NCFLs and NSDA Nationals
  2. Jane Leifer - NSDA Nationals
  3. AugustGrace Young - worth noting, missed qualifying by one point 


  1. Audrey Chan and Sanika Jain - NCFLs - missed NSDA Nationals by one place 
  2. Pinelope Donovan and Sam Howe - NSDA Nationals 

Extemporaneous Speaking

  1. Katie Cressman - NCFLs
  2. Josh Meyers - NCFLs 

Oral Interpretation (OI - Poetry and Prose)

  1. Pinelope Donovan - NCFLs (took 4th at NCFLs last year)
  2. Jane Leifer - NCFLs 

Original Oratory

  1. Hannah Knapp - NCFLs 
  2. Khushi Upadhyay - NCFLs

Program Oral Interp (POI - they create their own narrative using poetry and prose pieces)

  1. Kara Grossman - NSDA Nationals (Quarterfinalist at NSDA last year) 

World Schools Debate - selected to represent our District via their outstanding performance all season 

  1. Neha Ambati
  2. Kailyn Smith
  3. Rhianna Zhang