O’FALLON, Mo. – The Eastern District of the Missouri Court of Appeals took its show on the road to Fort Zumwalt West High School on Monday.
Chief Judge Lisa Page said it shows kids how difficult it is making decisions
“It gets them thinking about the work we do as judges and the importance of a fair and impartial judiciary,” she said.
Every chief judge does something to reach out to their community. Because of a retirement, the eastern district is short a judge. Judge Page decided to take her court to Fort Zumwalt West High and have a special judge sit in to replace the retired judge. It proved to be a win for the court and kids.
“I think it was amazing to be a part of it; to watch it and see it. I think for youth and government students, and especially government students that are juniors here, that will be doing cases like this,” said sophomore Ella Brown.
The cases involved Missouri citizens represented by the attorney general’s office and the defendant and appellate, represented by the Missouri state public defender’s system.
“I like how the attorneys did a good job presenting their case and thought it was interesting to also see how judges were able to ask their questions and get clarifications of points they wanted from them,” said senior Kara Lester.
The day allows judges to teach students before court as a program put forth by the Missouri Supreme Court Civic Education Committee.
“It allows them to see our Constitution at work and it was an awesome opportunity for our kids to see what it’s like,” said Neil Berry, principal at Ft. Zumwalt West High School.