May Brings Young Minds to the Courthouse
More than flowers were blooming at the New Castle County Courthouse during the month of May. Employees and regulars of the New Castle County Courthouse may have noticed the presence of numerous young visitors as forty-five fifth graders from All Saints Catholic School came to the courthouse on May 6, 2014 to learn about the duties of Capitol Police Officers and witness the daily activities of the New Castle County Courthouse.
|Commissioner Lynne Parker and French judicial assistants call the Court to attention for the "Case of the Stolen Cell Phone" with a bang of the gavel.|
Twenty French exchange students from Tower Hill followed close on their heels to participate in a Youth Forum on May 13, 2014 and learn about the American judicial system. This visit has become a bi-annual event at the courthouse. The students had the opportunity to ask questions about the Delaware judicial system and, in particular, the death penalty " a topic of considerable interest for Europeans.
The last student visit was held on May 15 with nearly 30 students from H.B. duPont Middle School. These students are participants in the Cognitive Emotional Learning Esteem Building (CELEB) program founded by Pastor Derrick Johnson. CELEB seeks to promote smart, responsible decision making among young teens that will positively influence their lives and enrich their schools and communities. The Honorable Alex Smalls, Chief Judge of the Court of Common Pleas, met with the students in his courtroom and encouraged them to always seek out knowledge as a way to improve their lives. State Prosecutor Kathleen M. Jennings and Assistant Public Defender Natalie Haskins also spoke with the students about strategies for staying safe and out of trouble this summer.
None of these visits would have been possible without the help of Capitol Police, the Judicial Information Center, the Administrative Office of the Courts Information Desk, the Office of the Public Defender, the Attorney General's Office, and the numerous judicial officers who volunteered their time to share their experience of the judicial system with the students.