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About Taft Speech & Debate

We hope you choose Taft High School's Speech and Debate as your intellectual and creative home.

Meeting from 7 am to 7:50 am Monday through Friday, we are among the most vibrant and expressive clubs/ competitive teams on campus, which you will see when you explore this website, where you can watch testimonials from both our varsity and novice members and sample rounds from our two divisions: Debate (argumentation with rules) and Speech (theatrical presentations of both serious and humorous pieces from movies, plays and TV shows, as well as original pieces). No matter what, you're sure to find something here that speaks to you.


If you're interested, be sure to sign up with your email address for further updates. We hope to see you in August!

Welcome To our Website

From Coach Douglas Lasken

Doug Lasken taught elementary school for 16 years in South Los Angeles and Hollywood. In 2009, he attained credentialing to teach secondary English and was hired at Taft.  He taught English at Taft (and, since 2005, coached speech and debate) until he retired in 2009.  His post-retirement employment included two summers teaching English and debate in South Korea and two years as the debate coach at New Jew Community High School (currently de Toledo High School).  In 2012 he returned to Taft as its Speech and Debate coach. He has coached the team to the State and National Levels on a regular basis since then.

Greetings from your Officers

Vishnu Murali and Ryan Azarmi-Por

Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.

Winston Churchill

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5461 Winnetka Ave, Woodland Hills, CA 91364

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