Students from six different high schools squared off in a battle of pro versus con in Allentown on Thursday.

William Allen High School hosted its first competitive debate in six years. Students from Allentown Central Catholic, Dieruff, Emmaus, Parkland and Whitehall participated.

The topic of the debate was a national ban on tobacco products. The arguments were held in several different classrooms, in front of William Allen students.

"It gives the debaters an audience, but it also hopefully will stimulate our own students who are not on the debate team to consider debate but also to understand how you research issues and how you look at issues from different angles," said Russ Mayo, superintendent of the Allentown School District.

The William Allen debate team is currently in fourth place in the local debate league.