Debate it Forward (DIF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization specializing in after-school debate classes and programs. DIF employs a pioneering curriculum that embraces academic rigor, fosters cognitive development, generates social and emotional growth (e.g. empathy and self-esteem), and creates enjoyable debate activities and projects. While debate is accessible to most well-resourced high schools, there has been little focus on debate programs for young students (3rd-8th graders), underserved students, and students with diagnosed learning differences. We believe these groups are typically neglected because they are (erroneously) considered as “too young,” “not interested,” and “not capable". The insight underlying DIF is that young, under-served and differently-abled students enjoy and benefit immensely from debate. Activities involve becoming knowledgeable about timely, real-world challenges in age appropriate ways, honing research, analytical thinking, and logic skills, developing respect for alternative views, enhancing social-emotional growth, and improving writing and presentation skills.