With the school year quickly approaching, Discovering Justice’s outreach over the summer has recruited a record number of teams for its flagship after-school Mock Trial Program this Fall.
Through the work of Outreach and Recruitment Associate, Malia Brooks, Discovering Justice will be bringing back its signature program to New Bedford and Springfield and expanding the number of schools participating in Boston and Lowell. Brooks spent the summer reaching out to school systems and to the legal community, finding new middle schools and new volunteers to serve as legal mentors.
“The Mock Trial Program connects middle school students with legal professionals to learn about the justice system and cultivate their civic skills, ” said Education Program Director, Laura Brenner. “At the end of the program at the Mock Trial, our students shine, giving arguments confidently to a real judge and jury as student attorneys.”
During the program, students learn about the First Amendment through a case focused on finding the line between free speech and unpopular speech. Under the tutelage of their legal mentors during weekly 90-minute sessions, students create their own opening statements, question witnesses, and deliver persuasive closing arguments.
“We hope that each of our students leave the program as a civic-minded community member ready to navigate these systems and ultimately transform these systems for the better. That all starts with the confidence and skills they practice at Mock Trial as middle schoolers,” explained Brenner.
The ten-week program is set to begin the first week of October and conclude in December with a Mock Trial at courthouses across the Commonwealth.
If you are interested in bringing the program to your middle school, law firm, bar association, or law school this fall or in the future, reach out to Discovering Justice’s Outreach & Recruitment Associate, Malia Brooks at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here or see below to hear from the students, teachers, and legal mentors about their past experiences at Mock Trial.