Law students in grades 11 and 12, representing the Peel and Dufferin-Peel Catholic district school boards, will tackle with concepts of law and justice during the 14th annual Peel Mock Trial Tournament, which takes place on March 3 and March 24 at the A. Grenville and William Davis Courthouse in Brampton.
"The Peel Mock Trial Tournament is a forum in which the classroom and the courtroom unite," says Poleen Grewal, superintendent of curriculum and instruction support services. "Students use critical-thinking, inquiry and communication skills to develop informed opinions on legal issues and apply this knowledge to argue a case that simulates a real trial in a Canadian courtroom. The experience helps to prepare them to become active, engaged and informed citizens."
On March 3, during the preliminary rounds, each school will be represented by a team of eight students—four lawyers, two witnesses and two alternates. The teams will each participate in two trials, once as the Crown and once as the defence. Team members will be assessed by judges and individual scores will contribute to the team's total score. The four teams with the highest cumulative scores at the end of March 3 will move on to compete in the semi-final rounds on March 24.
The following schools will participate in the tournament:
Peel District School Board
- Applewood Heights Secondary School
- Castlebrooke Secondary School
- Cawthra Park Secondary School
- Central Peel Secondary School
- Chinguacousy Secondary School
- Gordon Graydon Memorial Secondary School
- Mayfield Secondary School
- North Park Secondary School
- Stephen Lewis Secondary School
- The Woodlands
Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board
- Ascension of Our Lord
- St. Aloysius Gonzaga Secondary School
- St. Joan of Arc Secondary School
- St. Joseph Secondary School
St. Jude's Academy located in Mississauga will also be partcipating.
The tournament has been organized by the Peel Justice Education Network, which consists of members of Peel region's judicial, legal and education systems. Each school had access to two lawyers who volunteered to support the school team with its case preparation. In addition, members of the Peel Regional Police will also assist teams to prepare their cases. The Honourable Justice Nancy Kastner of the Peel Justice Education Network has arranged for prominent lawyers and justices from both the Ontario Court of Justice and Superior Court of Justice to preside as judges on each of the tournament days.
The tournament is supported by a generous financial contribution and other in-kind donations from the Ontario Justice Education Network. Financial and in-kind support has also been provided by Peel's legal community and Canadian educational publishers including:
- The Canadian Association of South Asian Lawyers
- The Criminal Lawyers' Association
- The Honourable Bill Davis and Family
- Heart Lake Rotary Club
- McCarney & Associates
- The Office of the Crown Attorney
- Ontario Justice Education Network
- Ontario Provincial Police
- The Osgoode Society
- The Peel Criminal Lawyers' Association
- The Peel Law Association
- Peel Regional Police
- The Public Prosecution Service of Canada
The tournament will run from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on March 3 and from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on March 24. The Honourable Justices Nancy Kastner and Steven Coroza of the Ontario Court of Justice will open the tournament on March 3. The closing ceremony will take place on March 24 at 1 p.m.
The A. Grenville and William Davis Courthouse is located at 7755 Hurontario St. in Brampton.
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