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O’Brien & Levine Blog: On the Record

Discovering Justice: The Earlier the Better

The Discovering Justice curriculum starts in kindergarten and continues through 8th grade, with engaging programs that address kids’ curiosity about where rights originate and how they are protected. Lessons start in the classroom, continue after school and carry into the courtroom—under the guidance of legal community volunteers and dedicated teachers.

A 3rd grader may think, “hey, that’s not fair!” if she believes some kids got in trouble, and others did not, for doing the same thing. Children Discovering Justice sorts it out, encouraging respectful discourse to resolve differences in constructive ways.

A 6th grader may think, “I have freedom of speech. I can say whatever I like, and school policy can’t stop me.” Discovering Justice looks at what the Bill of Rights has to say about that.

An 8th grader may think, “the verdict in the mock trial was all wrong. It didn’t follow the facts of the case.” In Stand Up for Your Rights, the student and his team appeal the decision, learning how to advocate for their client, use precedent and respond to the presiding judge. Are their assumptions justified?

The Discovering Justice Annual Benefit, coming up April 13, 2016, 6:00 p.m., at the Moakley U.S. Courthouse, raises funds to develop the curriculum and support the resources for these outstanding programs. O’Brien & Levine is a long-standing sponsor. President Kenny Zais sees it as one way among many to give back, “helping kids understand their civic responsibilities in their communities.”

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