Chris Ruys Communications, Inc.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 16, 2011
SPRINGFIELD, IL – Teams from 48 high schools statewide will participate in the 29th annual Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) High School Mock Trial Invitational Friday and Saturday, March 4 and 5, 2011, at the University of Illinois at Springfield, Public Affairs Center – Lower Level.
The eight top-scoring teams will compete in the final round on Saturday, March 5, for the state championship. [The trials will begin Friday, March 4, at 11:15 a.m. and will continue through Saturday afternoon. The final round will begin at approximately 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 5].
The winning team will represent Illinois at the National High School Mock Trial Championship in Phoenix, Arizona, May 5-7, 2011.
“The mock trial program is a rare opportunity for Illinois high school students to compete in a high-level academic endeavor,” says Pablo A. Eves of Bloomington, chair of the ISBA’s Standing Committee on Law-Related Education for the Public, which conducts the program.
“Students must analyze complex information, apply logic and deductive reasoning, communicate effectively, and use other critical thinking skills in the trial scenario,” he continued. “The ISBA offers this opportunity for the students to come together, after months of hard work and preparation, to challenge each other and stimulate discussion.”
Each 10-member team tries both sides – plaintiff and defense – of a hypothetical case developed by the ISBA Standing Committee on Law-Related Education for the Public. This year, the case is the People of the State of Illinois, complainant, vs. Whitney Grey, defendant, who is on trial for committing arson with the intent to defraud an insurer. Grey, who has a juvenile record of having started two fires in the city of Thunderbird, Ill., is accused of knowingly starting a fire at Bellows & O’Brien Pub in Thunderbird, where he/she worked as a jack of all trades including a bartender, runner, server, cleaning crew, etc. The pub was co-owned by Aston Bellows and Lane O’Brien; Bellows wanted out of the business and expressed interest in selling his/her share to O’Brien, but O’Brien needed time to gather adequate funding.
Students will assume the roles of attorneys and witnesses, and a panel of Illinois lawyers and judges, along with members of the ISBA Law-Related Education Committee, will rate the students' performance. The students must also take a written test about the issues of the case and basic legal principles.
The high school mock trials have been conducted each year since 1982 by the Illinois State Bar Association to provide Illinois high school students an interesting and challenging way to gain insight into the American judicial system.
The 33,000 member ISBA, with offices in Springfield and Chicago, provides professional services to Illinois member attorneys, and education to the public.
Members of the media are welcome to cover any portion of the mock trials over the two-day period.
Participating Schools (as of 2-16-11)
Illinois State Bar Association 2011 Mock Trial Invitational
March 4 – 5, 2011 · University of Illinois at Springfield
Bartlett High School, Bartlett
Benet Academy, Lisle
Bloom Trail High School, Chicago Heights
Boylan Catholic, Rockford
Carmel Catholic, Mundelein
Chatham Glenwood, Chatham
Chicago Christian, Palos Heights
De La Salle Institute, Chicago
Evanston Township, Evanston
Glenbard East, Lombard
Glenbard North, Carol Stream
Glenbard South, Glen Ellyn
Glenbrook South, Glenview
Guerin College Prep, River Grove
Highland Park, Highland Park
Hinsdale Central, Hinsdale
Hinsdale South, Darien
Huntley Consolidated, Huntley
Joliet Catholic Academy, Joliet
Joliet Central High School, Joliet
Joliet West High School, Joliet
Kenwood Academy, Chicago
Lake Forest Academy, Lake Forest
Lexington High School, Lexington
Libertyville High School, Libertyville
Maine Township East, Park Ridge
Maine Township West, Des Plaines
Maine Township South, Park Ridge
Morgan Park Academy, Chicago
Mount Carmel, Chicago
Normal Community, Normal
Normal Community West, Normal
Oak Park & River Forest, Oak Park
Providence Catholic, New Lenox
Providence St Mel, Chicago
St. Charles East, St. Charles
St. Charles North, St. Charles
South Elgin, South Elgin
Thornton Township, Harvey
Timothy Christian, Elmhurst
Wheaton, West Chicago
York Community, Elmhurst
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