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Background Information

The Washington Arlington Catholic Forensic League is primarily a metropolitan Debate and Speech League open to all schools in the greater Washington area. It is the local unit of the National Catholic Forensic League which was established in 1951. Based upon the ideal of open membership, both the WACFL and the NCFL welcome public and private schools. The purpose of the WACFL/NCFL is to encourage and to assist in the development of articulate leaders through whose skills truth may be widely spread and become an influence in the life of the nation. Further, the purpose is to promote curricular and extracurricular speech and debate activities in all secondary schools in the nation. Any high school located within the geographical boundaries of the United States and Canada is eligible for membership in the NCFL.


The Washington Arlington Catholic Forensic League provides a series of tournaments throughout the year. In each month from October through March there is one Policy Debate, one Lincoln-Douglas Debate, one Public Forum Debate, one Speech, and one Student Congress tournament. Due to school and/or calendar restrictions several events may be held on the same date.

At each of the preliminary tournaments students earn qualifications to attend the Metropolitan Championship Tournaments held in March. This tournament determines the students who will represent the WACFL at the NCFL Grand National Tournament held on Memorial Day weekend each year.

League Membership

WACFL is made up of two dioceses that compete together, but qualify students to the NCFL Grand National Tournament as individual dioceses. Approximately 25 public, private, and Catholic schools in Maryland and Washington, DC make up the Archdiocese of Washington. Approximately 40 public, private, and Catholic schools in Northern Virginia make up the Diocese of Arlington.