FROM CLASSROOM TO COURTROOM:
Acting as prosecutor, defense attorney, or witness in a mock trial was one of many highlights for teachers participating in the “From Classroom to Courtroom” project held in the New Castle County Courthouse June 22-24th. The project, which was designed to provide teachers with tools that will help them educate their students about the court system, was attended by fourteen teachers from throughout the state.
In addition to the mock trial, the teachers had the opportunity to learn about the courts from judges who volunteered to assist with presentations on topics including the independent judiciary, the functions of federal and state courts, and the role of a juror. Presentations by the Offices of the Attorney General and the Public Defender taught them about the complicated issues surrounding death penalty cases. Teachers also learned more about resources available to assist them in teaching their students about the justice system through a hands-on tour of the Judicial Branch web site, including a section on educational resources, and a discussion of Delaware Law Related Education Center resources.
The teachers were uniformly excited about the program and looking forward to working with their students on mock trials and other exercises they learned about during their time in the Courthouse. Presenters were equally as admiring of the teachers, who displayed a great deal of interest and inquisitiveness, as well as an impressive ability to think on their feet during the mock trial!
The project was a joint effort of the Delaware Supreme Court, the Administrative Office of the Courts, the Delaware Law Related Education Center, and the University of Delaware.