The purpose of the speech is to apply the principles of Rotary International’s 4-Way Test to a current ethical issue. Students are challenged to identify a topic they feel passionate about and to adopt a point of view from which they will seek to persuade others. It should be something from the speaker’s personal experience or general knowledge. There are no restrictions regarding the choice of topic as long as it is not blatantly offensive.

Each part of the 4-Way Test should be addressed during the speech. They should be specifically stated, as the intent of the speech is to use the 4-Way Test to resolve an issue. Each part could be used to prove either a positive or negative point. 


Your club’s contest chair should reach out to your area high school(s) and establish relationships with principals and/or a point of contact (usually an English teacher or an administrator).
Clubs should restrict competition to the high schools located within their club boundaries, rather than infringing upon another club's area.
Feel free to customize the ‘Invitation letter to Principal’ and PowerPoint presentation to cultivate relationships with schools. (Under “Files” on this site.)
Each club will determine the location for their contest.  It is recommended that clubs hold their contest at a regular club meeting and schedule the student speakers as the program for that day.


If the school conducts a contest before your club contest, it should be held in a timely manner so as to avoid conflicts with vacations and finals.

Club-level contests are best held before Monday, March 25, 2024 (deadline for entry into the district contest).  If deadlines cannot be made for any reason, please contact the 4-Way Test Speech Committee Chairperson for alternative arrangements. 

When scheduling your club competition, it is desirable to invite the parents of speakers, the high school principal, and the cooperating teacher. 

The district-level contest is held in two rounds, a semi-final round and the finals. Both rounds will take place on Saturday, April 6, 2024 at Springfield High School, 1880 Canton Road, Akron, Ohio 44312. There, winners from the club level will be grouped at random to compete in the semi-final round. One winner from each group will advance to the Finals.


Each club must decide what it thinks are appropriate prizes, and how many prizes will be awarded.  Clubs are eligible to advance two (2) participants per school to the district-level contest. Clubs with more than one school in their jurisdiction can determine the number of students they send to the district contest (subject to the two (2) participants per school rule).

Clubs are responsible to register and pay admission fees for students to participate at the district level contest, prior to Monday, March 25, 2024.