COPFS corporate

Pupils from St Peter the Apostle in Clydebank win prestigious COPFS Public Speaking Competition

Two pupils from St Peter the Apostle High School in Clydebank have been crowned winners of this year’s Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) school public speaking competition.

Third-year students Beth Dalrymple and Katie Orr won the prestigious contest after edging out teams from The Royal High School, Edinburgh, and Shawlands Academy from Glasgow in the final at Parliament House in Edinburgh.

The topic for the final was: “The most pressing equality issue in Scotland today is....  to address it I would....” 


The judges were Ruth Charteris, KC, Solicitor General for Scotland, Scott Pattison, Sheriff and temporary High Court Judge, and Lesslie Young, Chief Executive, Epilepsy Scotland. 

And they were each hugely impressed by the quality of the speaking.

But in the end, it was St Peter the Apostle who had the final say by coming out on top.

Presenting the trophy to the winners, the Solicitor General Ruth Charteris, KC praised each school’s contribution to a hard-fought final.

She said: “Huge congratulations to Beth and Katie on their success. All those taking part provided excellent examples of public speaking.

“Each and every one of you should be incredibly proud of yourselves. You have made your schools proud and your families proud.

“It has been a pleasure to see pupils come together in the spirit of friendly competition to develop confidence in their public speaking skills while addressing important issues relating to diversity and equality.”

It’s the first time a school from the sheriffdom of North Strathclyde has triumphed in the long-running and popular competition.

Beth said: “I cannot believe we have won. We are just so pleased and shocked. It feels a bit surreal. We have exceeded all our expectations.”

Katie added: “When we were announced as the winners, my jaw just dropped. It was an amazing feeling, and we are just so proud to be the first school from Clydebank to win.”

The competition started in Glasgow in 2012 and expanded gradually throughout the country with the first national final taking place in 2015. The competition quickly became popular with pupils, teachers and staff at COPFS.


The competition represents part of the work done by Scotland’s prosecution service to improve understanding of equality and diversity issues. 


It is also part of the service’s strategy to reach out to communities and young people in Scotland and engage them in discussion and debate on prominent issues related to the work of COPFS. 


This year’s competition involved 178 pupils forming 89 teams from 57 schools across Scotland. 


add topic? [HM1]

Well done: Ruth Charteris, KC, Solicitor General for Scotland, with the winning pupils Beth Dalrymple and Katie Orr