Multicultural Perspectives Public Speaking Competition

2016 State Finals.

Congratulations to the winners of each age division.

The Years 3&4 winner was Rafferty Laight from North Sydney Public School, who was one of fourteen finalists competing at the NSW Teachers Federation Confernce Centre on Friday 28 October.

The Years 5&6 winner was Daniel Hwang from Artarmon Public School, who was one of fourteen finalists competing at the Eugene Goossens Hall, ABC Centre on Friday 18 November. Daniel is seen in the photo below with Hakan Harman, CEO of Multicultural NSW.

2016 MPPS Senior Winner

Click here for the details of the 2016 finals including dates, venues and which schools competed,  Also, if you're still holding a blank participation certificate, you can click here to find a template that will help you write your name and school on it - just type in your details and print through your browser. Otherwise keep reading below for more information on the competition including rules, topics and some videos about past years. 

Multicultural Perspectives Public Speaking was first introduced in 1996, which means this year is our 21st birthday! Help us celebrate by joining in and making it the biggest year yet! Last year 2,000 students took up the opportunity to practice their public speaking skills, heighten their awareness of multicultural issues, and improve their confidence, all while giving us some of the best speeches we’ve ever seen - you can check out videos of them in the finals at the bottom of the page. Also, if you're looking for a few hints on preparing  for this year's competition, you can download those by clicking here. Finally, please note that you can download the basic competition information below as a PDF by clicking here.

Who can enter the competition?

The Multicultural Perspectives Public Speaking Competition is open to all NSW government primary schools. The competition has two different age divisions – one for Years 3&4 students and one for Years 5&6 students. Schools can enter a maximum of 2 contestants in each of the 2 age divisions, totalling 4 contestants overall.

How do schools enter the competition?

The online entry form for the competition can be accessed by clicking here. Entries should be submitted before close of business on Thursday 24 March 2016. Please ensure that you include contact details for the teacher who will be looking after the entry. All teachers must provide a direct email address (preferably your “” departmental address) so we can contact them with the date and time of their final.

How much does entry cost?

The entry fee for the competition is $20.00 (including GST) per contestant, which means a maximum of $80.00 per school. Schools will automatically be debited for this amount once they submit their entry form. Please advise your school’s finance department that this will occur. Please note that fees are due on entry and cannot be refunded even where students might subsequently withdraw.

What are the speaking requirements?

At each stage of the competition contestants present both a prepared speech and an impromptu speech. For their prepared speech, contestants must choose a topic from the list of multicultural topics below. The prepared speech must have multicultural content. The impromptu speech is chosen by the adjudicator on the day, and will be on a general, non-multicultural theme. Contestants will have 5 minutes to write their impromptu speeches. The speaking times for each speech and division are outlined below. Note that speakers are expected to finish at or just beyond the official speaking time, and it will be considered poor timing to reach the continuous bell.

Division / Speech Warning bell Speaking time (2 bells) Continuous bell
Years 3&4 prepared speech 2 minutes 3 minutes 4 minutes
Years 3&4 impromtpu speech 30 seconds 1 minute 1  ½  minutes
Years 5&6 prepared speech 3 minutes 4 minutes 5 minutes
Years 5&6 impromptu speech 1  ½  minutes 2 minutes 2  ½  minutes

What are the prepared speech topics for 2016?

Years 3&4 Topics

  • The same but different
  • Bullying
  • Racism - it stops with me
  • Kids can make a difference
  • The meaning of Australia Day
  • When does a migrant become an Australian?
  • Every family has a story
  • The Olympics - bringing people together
  • Recipes for harmony
  • You, me, us

Years 5&6 Topics

  • Respect
  • Words can hurt
  • My identity
  • Refugees
  • Multiculturalism online
  • Boundless plains to share
  • Stronger together
  • Global connections
  • Re-Reclaim Australia
  • "Boo" to racism in sport

What are the adjudicators looking for?

The adjudicators will make their decision based on the manner, matter and method the contestants employ in presenting their speeches. They will expect contestants to be confident and engaging speakers. The prepared speeches need to show an understanding of multiculturalism, and be well developed and interesting. Contestants are also expected to demonstrate a balance of personal opinion and information in their speeches, as well as a balance of humour and sincerity. Finally, adjudicators are required to give equal consideration to the prepared and impromptu speeches in making their decision.

What are the rules of the competition?

Other than the entry rules and speaking times detailed above, it should also be noted that contestants are not allowed to use any props or external aids such as Powerpoint presentations during their speeches. They are encouraged to speak from palm cards and present from a stage without the use of a lectern or microphone. Finally, just a reminder that the prepared speech must have multicultural content to be successful.

How does the competition run?

Schools might need to conduct their own internal competition to select 2 representatives for each division of the Multicultural Perspectives Public Speaking Competition. We'll then advise all contestants of the date and venue of their local final which will be held in the last four weeks of term 2. The winners of local finals proceed to one of 8 regional finals held in August. Regional winners proceed to the state final. The Years 3&4 state final will be held at the NSW Teachers Federation Conference Centre on Friday 28 October, and the Years 5&6 state final will be held at the Eugene Goossens Hall, ABC Centre on Friday 18 November. All schools are welcome to attend the state finals.

What are the prizes?

All contestants involved in the competition will receive a certificate acknowledging their participation. Certificates of congratulations will then be awarded to all local and regional winners. State finalists will receive a silver medallion, and the state winners in each division will receive a gold medallion and a perpetual trophy.

Multicultural NSW logo

Who are the organisers of the competition?

The Multicultural Perspectives Public Speaking Competition is organised by The Arts Unit and the Equity Unit of the NSW Department of Education. Additional funding for the Multicultural Perspectives Public Speaking Competition has been provided by Multicultural NSW.

Contact Details

If you have any questions about the competition, please contact Tony Davey, Multicultural Perspectives Coordinator on (02) 8512 1171 or email:

Who are the past winners of the competition?

A list of all previous winners in the Multicultural Perspectives competition is available here.

2015 State Finals

Here are the amazing state finals of the competition from last year. You can watch them either by clicking play here, or if you click on the titles you'll be taken to Vimeo to watch them. There you'll have more options like being able to download the video or jump between the different speakers by clicking on their times. Congratulations to all of the speakers who made it to the finals last year, and good luck to everyone watching and thinking about this year's competition!