TSL International Schools Essay Competition and Debate 2019

TSL International Schools Essay Competition and Debate 2019

Deadline: December 20, 2018

Entries are invited for the TSL International Schools Essay Competition and Debate 2019. TSL invites schoolchildren around the world to share their unique perspectives on the role young people can play in achieving UN Sustainable Development Goal #15 – to conserve and sustainably manage life on land.

According to the UN and its global partners, a flourishing life on land is fundamental to our future security. We are all part of the planet’s ecosystem, yet we have caused it severe damage through deforestation, loss of natural habitats and land degradation. Promoting the sustainable use of our ecosystems and preserving biodiversity is not just ‘another cause’, it is a key to our future survival. UN SDG #15 challenges countries to conserve and sustainably manage Life on Land, as part of wider efforts across all countries to protect the Earth as a whole.

Children are strongly encouraged to share their own experiences (good or bad, local or national) in order to help bring their essays alive and support a meaningful international dialogue.


  • Every year, one overall Grand Prize winner (plus Teacher Champion and parent) wins a free trip to the TSL International Schools Debates & Awards. The 2019 debates will take place in British Columbia, Canada;
  • The writers of the top ten essays in each category (Primary or Secondary) receive medals and all Finalists, Honourable Mentions and Debate Attendees receive personalised certificates.


  • Open to primary students and secondary students, supported by Teacher Champions, parents and schools.
  • Each student is invited to submit one essay in English, entitled:
    • Primary students (ages 7-11; max. 400 words): Young people are key to achieving SDG #15 (Life on Land)
    • Secondary students (ages 11-17; max. 600 words): Young people are key to achieving SDG #15 (Life on Land)

Judging and Rules

  • The essays are judged for originality and creativity in all formats, and the potential to contribute to a constructive international debate;
  • Unique and well-argued perspectives score highly. Please refrain from copying and pasting non-original material;
  • An international judging panel of sustainability experts and educationalists will select the winning entries for each age category.


Click here to enter

For more information, visit Trust for Sustainable Living Essay Competition.