Youth Courthouse Project Committee
The Youth Courthouse Project Committee is changing the date of its monthly meeting from the first Wednesday to the second Tuesday of every month (September - May). Meetings will be held at 12:15 p.m. in the upstairs conference room of the Bar Association building.
The Youth Courthouse Project Committee conducts courthouse tours of the Circuit Court for middle school students and has expanded its tours to several high schools as well as Montgomery College students over recent years. This year we have a record-breaking number of tours scheduled for the 2015-16 school year. The tours provide students with a great deal of information about the legal system, important legal issues impacting young people, including information about drugs and alcohol, and career opportunities. The students meet in the lobby level and then visit with the State's Attorney's Office, which provides a wonderful and informative presentation about criminal issues, drugs, alcohol and related matters, and engages the students in a mock trial. The students then visit with either the Administrative Judge or other available judge for a perspective from the bench and have the opportunity to ask questions, which are usually very insightful. The Sheriff's Office also makes a presentation to the students and usually has a canine demonstration, which is always a hit with the students of all ages. Finally, when time permits, the students observe a hearing or trial to get the experience of real-life issues. Overall, these tours provide a great opportunity for students to learn about our legal system and important issues of the day.
If anyone is interested in being a part of this experience, please attend one of our upcoming tours and observe. The tours begin around 9:30 am or 10 am in the Circuit Court Lobby: March 8, March 14, April 19, and May 24, 2016.
Courthouse Tour with Forest Oak Middle School.
On November 3,. 2014, students from Kingsview Middle School located in Germantown, MD came to the Circuit Court for a tour with the Youth Courthouse Project. The students participated in a Montgomery County Police Department SWAT Team demonstration, watched a K-9 demonstration, viewed a lock up area used as a holding cell with the assistance of Captain John Bean of the Sheriff's Department, and participated in a mock trial and role play with the assistance of committee members Assistant State's Attorney's Sheri Koch and Steve Chaiken, and more.
Pictured with the students are committee members Louise Schwartz, Esq., Co-Chair Patricia Via, Esq., and Co-Chair Holly Reed, Esq.
Administrative Judge John Debelius speaks with students from Gaithersburg Middle School during a tour offered by the Youth Courthouse Project Committee.
Assistant State's Attorney Amy Bills giving a powerpoint presentation to student from Shady Grove Middle school during a February Youth Courthouse Project tour.
In December, students from Col. E Brooke Lee Middle School toured the Circuit Court for Montgomery County. Pictured are the students, along with Judge Debelius, Youth Courthouse Committee Co Chair's Holly Reed, and Patty Via, Committee Secretary Diana Metcalf, and Sue Carter.
Judge Sharon Burrell is pictured with students from KIPP D.C. AIM Academy after taking questions from the student during a Youth Courthouse Project Committee tour. Pictured with the students are committee Co-Chair Patricia Via, Esq., and Louise Schwartz, Esq.
Stephen H. Chaikin
Patricia P. Via
Mar. 8, 2016
Apr. 12, 2016
May 10, 2016
Meetings will be held at 12:30 p.m. on the 2nd Tuesday of the month in the upstairs conference room of the Bar Association buildng, unless otherwise noted.