The D.C. Street Law Clinic at Georgetown Law was founded in 1972, with a mission of providing law-related educational services in high schools across the District of Columbia, and has served as a model for Street Law programs both nationally and internationally. The Clinic’s purpose is to provide students with a working understanding of substantive legal principles, while also learning how to “think” like a lawyer.
In the fall, students participated in the D.C. Commission of Human Rights Youth Human Rights Ambassador Contest. Students were given the opportunity to develop a creative media or non-media-related piece that demonstrated their understanding of the D.C. Human Rights Act. Several students from School Without Walls (SWW) were recognized as first, second, or third-place winners in their respective categories.
This spring, SWW students participated in the Mock Trial Tournament that also earmarked Street Law’s 40th Anniversary. The tournament engages all of the high schools involved in the Street Law Program and tests opposing teams on advocacy and litigation.
Students were given a closed packet of facts, witness statements, statutes, caw law and evidence, which they had to synthesize and utilize for the Trial. They also had to practice and master their public speaking skills and courtroom procedures. SWW’s mentor firm, Fried Frank, and the leading attorney for the mentorship, David Perez, contributed greatly to the preparation.
The two preliminary rounds of the competition were held at the Superior Court in the District of Columbia, with many actual D.C. Superior Court judges presiding over the moots. Last year, the SWW team won the city championship, and this year two teams from School Without Walls had the highest scores overall for the Plaintiff and the Defense and made it to the final round! The last SWW team also placed as 2nd Runner-Up on the Defense side.
The final round of the tournament took place at Hart Auditorium in the Georgetown University Law Center, where the Plaintiff’s Team ultimately took the victory by a very narrow margin. SWW students performed exceptionally in the Mock Trial as lawyers, witnesses and experts for the case.
Special thanks to the following persons who supported our students in preparation for the Mock Trial competition and Finals:
Fried, Frank, Harris Shriver, & Jacobson Law Firm
Georgetown Law Student, Jessica Lee
SWW Street Law Class
Go to the photo gallery for pictures of SWW Street Law students in action.