The Justice Teaching Center for Civic Learning provides a host of additional programs and opportunities for students at all levels. We are working with school districts, colleges, and universities to advance civic literacy. We host academic competitions; provide professional development training for civics, government, and law teachers; prepare judges and attorneys to serve as resource persons in the classroom; and create lessons designed to meet state standards in civics and government. We also offer special events for Constitution Day, Law Week, and other programs. We provide options for virtual and face-to-face presentations. Tell us your needs and see if we can help!
Annually, we will provide case materials for teachers and volunteers to use in the classroom to simulate a civil or criminal trial. Students will study the materials and reenact the case either in the classroom or in a courtroom. Students will be the lawyers, witnesses, and jurors in this experiential learning activity. Judges or lawyers can assist with serving as the judge in the trial simulation. We will have an annual competition for interested schools. You will tape your trial and submit using the instructions in the packet.
High school teams from throughout Florida's 20 judicial circuits compete for the opportunity to represent their region in the Florida High School Mock Trial Competition held annually.
Using a hypothetical case, teams present both sides of the case in the roles of attorneys and witnesses. School district personnel or voluntary bar associations organize the local county and circuit competitions. One team per circuit advances to the state competition organized by the Justice Teaching Center. Watch videos from previous years and get started with selecting your team. The winning Florida team is eligible to participate in the national high school mock trial competition!
The Florida Law Honor Society provides an opportunity for high school juniors and seniors to be recognized for their academic scholarship, service, and leadership. Public or private schools may be eligible to sponsor a local chapter.
A member school must make available to students, two or more law-related education courses during a school year. One course may be American Government or a related course. The remaining course or courses offered annually must be law or criminal justice electives.
Civics should be engaging and provide opportunities for students to solve problems they care about in their state and local communities. This project-based learning framework involves four primary components. Students identify a problem in their communities; research the problem and public policy alternatives; select or create a policy to best resolve the problem; and prepare an action plan with the steps needed to have the policy implemented by the appropriate level of government. Classes of middle or high school students, clubs, and other groups prepare a traditional or digital portfolio and may present their proposals before panels of judges at the district and state levels. Some districts hold public policy showcases (similar to history fair projects). Classroom teachers may submit entries to the Justice Teaching Center.
This program promotes constitutional literacy, as well as civic competence and responsibility among upper elementary, middle, and high school students. The interactive strategies, relevant content, and the simulated congressional hearing help students apply their civic and constitutional knowledge to present day issues. The methodology strengthens critical thinking, public speaking, and civil dialogue skills.
Students at the middle and high school levels may participate in a state level showcase, hosted by Florida Southern College, to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the United States Constitution. Winning teams at the state level may be eligible to participate in the national competition.