Woodland Middle School is making history.

Natalie Porter was the first student from her school to earn a national championship at the National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA) Middle School National Tournament June 18-21. Natalie placed first in the Dramatic Interpretation category for her rendition of Always… Patsy Cline.

Woodland Middle was also named an NSDA School of Excellence, a title given to the top 20 schools in total debate points.

Fallon O’Donnell placed third in the Storytelling category. Kathryn Porter placed fourth in the Storytelling category and sixth in the Humorous Interpretation category.

“We have a great group of girls who are just so gifted with this skill,” said WMS speech and drama teacher Margaret Hall. “This was a banner year for our Forensics Team, so I had a good feeling some of my kids would make it all the way.”

More than 180 schools competed in the tournament, and Woodland Middle was one of just two middle schools from Tennessee to compete.