Clarification of CDL Incentives

Pre-Introduction: Tracking Coach Incentives

The Coach Incentives Tracking Form is designed to help coaches track how their school is doing relative to several of the incentive programs described below.

The first sheet tracks the CPS Improved Performance Incentives, by projecting how schools will perform in the second half of the season, based on their current levels (post-T4) of second-semester participation. To improve on these projections you need to engage more students in your debate program at the remaining CDL tournaments and events.

The second sheet tracks the Allstate “Expanding Opportunities” performance so far. You’ll note the bar under the top five schools in each category (overall participation for the year, and participation improvement in the second semester). It is the top five schools in each category that will receive $500 incentives at the Chicago Debate Championship, March 26th.

The third sheet, and the individual school sheets thereafter, track how schools are performing relative to the Allstate Coaching Incentives — $100 incentive for every 12 debaters more participating at CDL tournaments throughout the season this year over last year ($50 for every 6 debaters more this year over last year), to be disbursed also on March 26th.


A few coaches have expressed some confusion about the CDL incentives — mostly Allstate incentives — being offered this year. This post — borrowing some from a post we made last month, shortly after Winter Break — is an effort to clear up any confusion there might be around the various incentives being offered.

But, first, please review the Incentive Payment Tracking Form, which tracks all of the incentives paid to coaches (or schools) by the CDL.

Allstate Professional Development Incentives

Coaches who undertake 20 hours – 10 hours for external coaches – of professional development for the full season receive a $100 incentive. This is in addition to the $100 Allstate Professional Development Incentives provided to some 17 coaches for undertaking 10 hours – 5 hours for external coaches – of professional development during the first half of the season (which we are defining in this context as ending on January 14th, so there is still time to earn an incentive for the first half).

You can check to see how many hours away you are from obtaining the Allstate Professional Development Incentive for the season’s second half (or first half) on the Professional Development Reporting Notebook. You can take a look at the various ways there are of undertaking professional development in the Chicago Debate League on the Professional Development homepage.

Allstate Coaching Incentives

The Chicago Debate League will be providing $100 for every 12 debaters more schools have at tournaments in 2010/11 over 2009/10. This in addition to the $100 Allstate Coaching Incentives that were provided through T3 for every 6 more debaters schools had at T1-T3 this year over last year.

You can check to see how many total tournament debaters your school has this year so far (post-T4, pre-T5) relative to how many total tournament debaters your school had last year (through T6) on the Allstate Coaching Incentives Tracking Form.

Note that all CDL tournaments (including, e.g., the McDermott Will and Emery JV Invitational) and all non-CDL tournaments (including, e.g., National Circuit Program tournaments) count toward a school’s tournament participation numbers.

Allstate Coaching Incentives will also be given to the top 20 schools in total tournament participation for the 2010/11 season, at the Chicago Debate Championship, Tournament Six. $350 will go to the top 10 highest participating schools each, and $150 to the 11 – 20 highest participating schools. Based on the data from the Tournament Reporting Notebook (through T4, not yet including the RCC’s T5 from last weekend), here’s where we stand today on those incentives.

1st – 10th ($350)
1. Whitney Young
2. Lane Tech
3. Payton
4. Urban Prep
5. Northside
6. Phoenix
7. Alcott
7. Chicago Ag.
7. Thomas Kelly
10. Lincoln Park

11th – 20th ($150)
11. Morgan Park
12. Taft
13. Brooks
14. Phillips
15. Hyde Park
16. Marshall-Mason
16. Mather
18. Hope
19. Woodlawn
20. Jones

CPS Improved Performance Incentives

We are currently on path to end the season under-budget in the allocation of coach stipends under the new Coach Stipend Allocation System by about $10,000 total. CPS has agreed to award incentives with these unallocated funds to schools in the top 20 increased participation performance at the end of this season, comparing T4-T6 tournament participants to T1-T3 tournament participants.

So, for example, Daniel Hale Williams H.S. had 12 tournament participants at T1-T3, according to the Tournament Reporting Notebook — if Williams has 18 tournament participants at T4-T6, that will be an increase of 50%, likely to rank in the top 20 at the end of the year in increased participation performance (unless there are 20 schools that have more than a 50% increase in their tournament participation the second half of the season).

The top 10 schools in improved performance (by percentage – T4-T6 over T1-T3) will receive $750, schools 11 – 20 will receive $250. Note, however, that these numbers assume that we end the season with $10,000 of unallocated coach stipend funding — we will adjust this incentive structure (up or down) depending on how much unallocated coach stipend funding we actually end the year with.

Allstate “Expanding Opportunities” Incentives

At the 2011 Chicago Debate Championship, the Chicago Debate League will be offering $500 Allstate “Expanding Opportunities” Incentives to the top five “Expanding Opportunities” schools – schools with 85% or higher percentages of Title I students – in overall tournament participation and the top five schools in increased participation (by percentage – T4-T6 over T1-T3). This is in addition to the $500 incentives that the CDL provided to the top 10 “Expanding Opportunities” schools in tournament participation after T3.

You can check to see the ranking of “Expanding Opportunities” schools going into T4 on the fifth sheet of the Tournament Reporting Notebook.


All of these incentives are paid to coaches, or if they prefer for funding anything debate-related (e.g., debate polo shirts, transportation, university debate institute scholarship). These incentives are designed to encourage and reward coaches’ efforts in getting more and more students at your school involved in competitive academic debate – not for the sake of “higher numbers,” but rather for the sake of your students’ educational futures, since research shows quite clearly that for urban high school students participating in competitive academic debate is one of the very best ways available to prepare for graduation and for access to and success in college.

Don’t hesitate to let us know if you have any questions about any of these incentive offerings, and we will of course keep you closely updated – through the use of our tracking forms and this blog.

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