One of the biggest secondary school debating competitions in the city came to an end yesterday, with Stewards Pooi Kei College in Sha Tin defeating Yuen Long's CCC Kei Yuen College in the final round. The 14th Nesta-SCMP debate, held at City University, was sponsored by tutorial company The Edge Learning Centre and organised by the Native English Speaking Teachers' Association and the South China Morning Post . The two teams debated whether the city's young people were growing up in a society that encouraged negative attitudes towards mainlanders. The three pupils representing Kei Yuen argued that mainlanders were taking up education and medical resources, and driving up property prices, which had made residents bitter. Stewards Pooi Kei took the opposing view that only a small portion of Hong Kong people held negative views of mainlanders. Although the media had run many stories about public outcries over mainlanders' behaviour, there had also been reports recognising national success in sports and technology. Neither schools nor the government encouraged cynicism towards mainlanders because the city was part of China, they said. They also challenged their opponents to prove that all sectors of society harboured such negative views. This turned out to be a good strategy, and Stewards Pooi Kei were named the winner in the senior category. The school's Sarah Tse Hiu-ching, in Form Four, was named best speaker. But the junior team from Stewards Pooi Kei lost out to Hoi Ping Chamber of Commerce Secondary School, in Ho Man Tin, debating the same motion. Adjudicators were impressed with the pupils' response to the their opponents' argument. "They listened and responded really well, and the quality of their rebuttals was great," said adjudicator Tom Spencer, a teacher at Law Ting Pong Secondary School.