Outreach Network Activities
American Judicature Society
Conversations on the Constitution
Conversations on the Constitution website includes “Separation of Powers,” “Advice and Consent,” “Establishment of Religion,” and “Search and Seizure” as featured topics. The site has conversation starters, focus questions, resources, and an interactive quiz on the powers each branch. The Separation of Powers pages feature three conversation starters: The Federalist No. 48, James Madison; Hamdi et. al. v. Rumsfeld, Secretary of Defense, et. al.; and Letter from President Eisenhower to Senator John Stennis (D-MS), October 7, 1957.
National Issues Forum on the American Jury
The ABA Judicial Division and the Coalition for Justice are partnering with the Kettering Foundation to create a National Issues Forum program on the American jury titled, “Reaching a Verdict: What Do We Want for the American Jury System.” A discussion guide was piloted at the ABA Midyear Meeting on Feb. 10 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Information on how to order the jury issue book, moderator's guide, and 10-minute “starter” video can be found here .
The Center for Jury Studies at the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) has assembled an extensive array of jury outreach programs that are described and linked to this site. Each resource is categorized by the type audience it is intended for: future jurors, the general citizenry, persons in the work force affected by jury service, court administrators, trial judges, and trial attorneys.
ABA Young Lawyers Division created this program to educate high school students about their roles as potential jurors. The 88-page curriculum guide and video are available free via the Website. The guide includes extensive information about the evolution of the jury system, how the right to trial by jury was guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, the role that citizens play in the judicial system by participating in the jury process, the voir dire process of selecting a jury, the order of a typical trial, and the jury’s role in the proceedings. The interactive mock trial video provides both a civil and criminal trial that set the stage for students to participate in deliberations in an effort to reach a verdict.
A dialogue designed to help high school classrooms and community groups explore the many issues related to trial by jury. It includes the history of trial by jury, an exploration of the issues confronting the jury today, and four landmark rulings on the jury.
An online resource guide provided by the Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago and the Chicago Historical Society for teachers, students, and citizens devoted to explaining the American jury system and its role in American legal, social, and political life. It features lessons, information, and resources developed by the Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago with high school teachers from California, Colorado, North Carolina, Washington, Wisconsin, and Illinois in cooperation with national experts and scholars on the jury system.
A dialogue with high-school students about the history of the Brown decision and its continuing legacy in American law and society.
“And Justice for All: Ensuring Public Trust and Confidence in the Justice System” is a program to engage small groups in discussions of how to make the justice system more fair. Free issue books, Moderator's Guides, and 10-min. video are provided.
In its ongoing effort to assist teachers and judges in educating young people about the federal courts, the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts' Office of Public Affairs offers a series of lesson plans that support the 52-page overview of the federal judiciary called Understanding the Federal Courts .
Judicial Outreach on a Shoestring: A Working Manual
A primer on outreach efforts by judges, court personnel and others. This publication outlines a variety of successful judicial public awareness and educational programs in communities around the country. Judicial Outreach on a Shoestring is a valuable tool for anyone concerned with judicial outreach.
Dialogue: Courts Reaching Out to Their Communities: A Handbook for Creating and Enhancing Court and Community Collaboration
Produced by the Special Task Force on Court/Community Outreach of the Judicial Council of California. This detailed document includes model public education programs for:
- Working with Youth and Schools
- Juror Education/Appreciation
- Speakers Bureaus
- Courthouse Tours
These program models include general descriptions, “what works” tips, and samples and tools for developing programs.
ABA Public Education Division Website
Law-related education projects flourish at national, state and local levels. Many programs either relate directly to judicial outreach efforts by the courts, or can be customized to meet the needs of judicial outreach to the community. See also a selection of resources explaining how the courts work .
A dialogue with high school students about their rights under the U.S. Constitution and a comparison with scenarios of other sets of rights.