upcoming events

High School Mock Trial

  • Case Release, October 31

Middle School Mock Trial

  • Regional Competitions, October 31
  • State Competition, November 21

Project Citizen

  • Training, October 1-2
  • Training, December 15-16

We the People

  • Training, October 8-9
  • Training, December 10-11

For more upcoming events, click here to visit our calendar

Cynthia H. Cothran
LRE Director
Oversees all programs

Marian Kirk
LRE Program Coordinator
Supports all programs and competitions

Donald Lanier
LRE Coordinator
Supports Community Works, Street Law, Foundations of Democracy, School Resource Officer Trainings, We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution, Youth Court


LRE Welcome | LRE National News | LRE State News | Teacher's Corner | LRE Programs | Community Works | Elementary Mock Trial | Foundations of Democracy | High School Mock Trial | LawForKids.org | Middle School Mock Trial | Project Citizen | Street Law | We the People | Youth Court

lre news

Welcome to the sixth edition of LRE News! We hope this newsletter has become a useful tool to you. It was created to provide information on LRE news, programs and events for those involved with LRE programs. Suggestions and feedback are always welcome.

LRE is a “one-stop” shop for teachers, SROs, pre-service teachers and attorneys. Professional development trainings are provided throughout the year on programs such as:

  • We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution;
  • We the People: Project Citizen;
  • Community Works;
  • Street Law;
  • Mock Trial;
  • Foundations of Democracy;
  • LawForKids.org; and
  • Law for Teachers.

60-Second Civics
The Center for Civic Education is pleased to introduce 60-Second Civics, a daily podcast that provides a quick and convenient way for listeners to learn about our nation’s government, the U.S. Constitution and American history. The podcast explores themes related to civics and government, the Constitutional issues behind the headlines, and the people and ideas that formed our nation’s history and government. To subscribe, visit http://civiced.org/rss/podcast_60second.xml.
2010 Law Day Theme Announced
The 2010 Law Day theme has been selected. Please be sure to visit www.lawday.org in the coming months for more details on the theme as well as downloadable artwork, lesson plans, resources, the Dialogue and more. The 2010 theme is:

Law in the 21st Century:
Emerging Challenges and Enduring Traditions

As we begin the second decade of the 21st century, the law is changing dramatically as it seeks to shape and adapt to new conditions. Economic markets are becoming global, transactions require cultural adaptation and understanding, populations are more mobile, and communication technologies such as the Internet bridge distances and time zones to form new communities around the world. In such a world, all of us must renew our commitment to the enduring principles of law, become knowledgeable about other legal systems, recognize the need to adapt our practices, and acquire new cultural understandings. In a global era, matters such as human rights, criminal justice, intellectual property, business transactions, dispute resolution, human migration and environmental regulation become not just international issues—between nations—but shared concerns. Law Day 2010 provides us with an opportunity to understand and appreciate the emerging challenges and enduring traditions of law in the 21st century.

2010 National Online Youth Summit (NOYS)
Register today for NOYS, It's Nothing to LOL About: How the First Amendment Affects You in the 21st Century. NOYS is a national, 12-week web-based program that encourages high school students to learn about and critically evaluate a timely law-related topic.


Project Citizen National Showcase Results
The Academy for Civic Engagement (Richland School District Two) in Columbia, SC had the proud of honor of winning the 2009 Project Citizen State Showcase and representing South Carolina at the National Conference of State Legislatures' Project Citizen annual showcase event in August. The Academy for Civic Engagement students’ proposal, “Styrofoam is Whack, Plastic is Back,” addressed the issue of using existing reusable plastic trays in place of styrofoam trays that fill our landfills. We are especially proud of these students for making a proposal to many key decision makers that included their superintendent, administration, school board, etc. The national results are finally in, and we are proud to announce that The Academy for Civic Engagement scored in the “Superior” Level, which is only the second time that SC has scored this highest level of ranking! We are very proud of the students and their teachers for representing South Carolina so beautifully. Furthermore, their portfolio was one of three chosen to represent the nation in the Center for Civic Education’s Washington, DC office. Congratulations!

Competition Dates for 2009-10
We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution
• Columbia, January 8, 2010

We the People: Project Citizen
•Columbia, April 15-16, 2010

Middle School Mock Trial
• Regionals (Charleston, Columbia, Conway & Greenville), October 31, 2009
• State (Lexington), November 21, 2009

High School Mock Trial
• Regionals (Charleston, Columbia, Conway & Greenville), February 27, 2010
• State (Columbia), March 12-13, 2010
• Nationals (Philadelphia, PA) May 5-9, 2010

The spotlight has stopped on…

holleyGeorgia Holley, Social Studies Teacher
Scholars Academy
Horry County
Conway, South Carolina

Georgia Holley is a native of South Carolina and was born in Holly Hill. She lived in the Holly Hill area until she went to school at the University of South Carolina – Coastal Carolina where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Education. Currently she resides in Murrells Inlet with her husband and son.

Ms. Holley currently teaches at Scholars Academy in the Horry County School District, which is a magnet school housed at Coastal Carolina University. She teaches 10th and 11th grade AP U.S. History. Holley was selected in May 2009 as the Horry County School District Teacher of the Year. When asked to write about her life as a teacher, Holley had this to say: 

“As a student of life, I glean wisdom from the great American poet Loretta Lynn. She said, ‘You’ve got to continue to grow or you get to be like last night’s cornbread—dry and stale.’ By learning with my students I encourage them to think for themselves and to chart their own journeys of discovery. The intellectual freedom this bestows upon the students is powerful as the fear of ‘not knowing’ is replaced with the love of ‘finding out more.’ A life of the mind is usually a life that is complete. I try to live such a life and hope to pass the gifts of exploration and curiosity on to my students. We can preach hard work and devotion to our children, but in the end it is as the famous psychiatrist Karl Menninger once said, ‘What the teacher is, is more important than what the teacher teaches.’

I am employed by the people of Horry County to prepare a citizenry that can face the challenges of the future. I do that by teaching them to think, to analyze, and to fix what is wrong. My former students have cut my hair and changed the oil in my car. They are parents, attorneys, lobbyists, and most importantly, teachers. One of my strongest contributions to our society is in shaping young patriots, students who can analyze the problems facing our nation while revering the gifts of liberty our forefathers bestowed upon us. Alexis de Toqueville said, ‘America is great because America is good.’ We are a nation of people who believe in personal initiative but who also devote ourselves to improving the common good. Familiarity with the complexities of our civil and political societies breeds not contempt but rather respect for a country that improves itself and constantly seeks to form a more perfect union. This belief forms the core of my curricula and is the basis of much of what I teach.”

For Ms. Holley, learning more about the world and acting as an engaged citizen are vitally important both inside and outside the classroom. With this in mind, she has dedicated much of her time over her 19-year career to instilling civic values through the High School Mock Trial and We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution programs in the various high schools where she taught. Holley’s classes over 10 years of participation with the High School Mock Trial program hold a state championship and first runner up title and have advanced to the state competition every year of their participation. In the six years of participating in the We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution competition, her classes won four state champion titles.

Holley is a member of the National Education Association and the S.C. Council for the Social Studies. She has been the social studies chair for the last 12 years at each school where she taught. She also serves as the District Coordinator for We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution in the first Congressional district for South Carolina. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking with her family.

The S.C. Bar Law Related Education Division is extremely appreciative of Ms. Holley’s efforts to increase civic education and action. She truly has made a positive impact on the citizens of Horry County and South Carolina as a whole.


sro corner (click here to learn more)

Description: Looking for a curriculum that teaches communication and problem solving skills? Community Works is a program targeting middle and high school students that can be implemented in the classroom, after school or in most any other setting. It provides students with a practical understanding of crime and crime prevention that is useful in their everyday lives. It can function as a stand-alone program, or it can be incorporated into a classroom curriculum. The curriculum includes 31 highly interactive session, involves community resource people and includes a service learning/action project component, if desired. This curriculum not only teaches teens to be resources for each other, but to interact positively with community members.

What's New: A two-day training is scheduled for March 18-19, 2010. Click here for registration information.

emt (click here to learn more)


Description: Elementary Mock Trial is an excellent way to begin to introduce the concepts of justice and the judiciary through fairy tale trials. We all know the stories of Goldilocks, Paul Bunyan, The Three Little Pigs and others. Through materials from the American Bar Association supplied to elementary teachers by the South Carolina Bar LRE Division, upper elementary students can learn about the courts in an interactive fashion. For the majority of the trials, there are even puppets available from the LRE Division available for checkout. 

What’s New: The LRE Division has added many new puppets and cases to choose from when implementing Elementary Mock Trial. The LRE Division will come to schools that implement the program to videotape the students presenting the mock trial cases with the puppets. For more information about the program, to review cases and choose puppets, click here.

fod (click here to learn more)

Description: Foundations of Democracy is a character education curriculum created by the Center for Civic Education. The curriculum is available for grades K-12 and addresses authority, responsibility, privacy and justice. The Center for Civic Education's mission is "to promote an enlightened and responsible citizenry, committed to democratic principles and actively engaged in the practice of democracy in the United States and other countries."  Students in South Carolina can benefit from this mission by becoming enlightened and active, responsible citizens while impacting the state through the implementation of this program. Through participation in this program, students will increase their basic skills of listening, speaking, writing, reading, problem analysis and awareness of the Constitution and how it is applicable to their daily lives.

high school mock trial (click here to learn more)

Description: The High School Mock Trial Program is a hands-on exercise in learning about due process. It is most often conducted as an extracurricular activity but can also be incorporated into law, forensics or public speaking classes.

What’s New: Don’t let this year slip by without registering for High School Mock Trial. Complete and return the mock trial registration form for each team registering. With each registration, enclose a check for the nonrefundable $100 registration fee. Checks should be made payable to S.C. Bar Law Related Education (LRE) Division. All fees go toward competition expenses. There is a limit of two teams registered per high school. All registrations are to be received by October 9, 2009. Click here to register.

Important High School Mock Trial Dates:

  • Case Released by 5 pm, October 30, 2009
  • Regionals (Charleston, Columbia, Conway & Greenville), February 27, 2010
  • State (Columbia), March 12-13, 2010
  • Nationals (Philadelphia, PA), May 5-9, 2010

(click here to learn more)

Do your students have questions? Do they need answers? Don’t let the students go through life without knowing about this fabulous online program for kids. LawForKids.org is a Web site dedicated to teaching children about the law. It was created with the specific goal of educating South Carolina’s youth, parents, communities and schools about the law and to encourage lawful behavior. The site includes an interactive forum through which students may anonymously ask questions about the law and receive correct, factual information from volunteer attorneys.

Access to the Web site is free and adapted for South Carolina youth. There are quizzes, interactive games, cartoons, comics, law documents, links to other law related education Web sites and a searchable database on South Carolina law and how it affects young people. Students will find the Web site helpful for research projects and homework assignments, but can also use the site to play games and hear first-hand from their peers about law related incidents and how to best handle various situations.

To access the Web site, visit www.LawForKids.org. Click “other states” in the top right corner of the home page, and then select South Carolina on the U.S. map. Users will then have the option of making the South Carolina site their permanent home page.

“In order for the brain to comprehend the heart must first listen.”
—David Perkins, Smart Schools

middle school mock trial (click here to learn more)

Description: The Middle School Mock Trial Program is a hands-on exercise in learning about due process. It is a team activity program that is most often conducted as an extracurricular activity, but can also be incorporated into law, forensics or public speaking classes.

What’s New: If you thought that mock trial was only for high school, then you thought wrong! The current 2009 case is available for FREE by clicking on the Middle School Mock Trial logo at www.scbar.org/lre. Regional competitions are scheduled for Saturday, October 31, 2009, in Charleston, Columbia, Conway and Greenville. The culminating state competition is scheduled in Columbia on November 21, 2009. Trainings are offered to teachers interested in implementing this program.

Registration for this year has already closed, but anyone interested in implementing this program is welcome to reserve a seat to watch the competition in action. Contact Cynthia H. Cothran at ccothran@scbar.org for more details.

project citizen (click here to learn more)

Description: We the People: Project Citizen is a curricular program for elementary, middle and high school students as well as youth groups that promotes competent and responsible participation in local and state government. The program helps young people learn how to monitor and influence public policy (a school rule or state law). In the process, they develop support for democratic values and principles, tolerance and feelings of political efficacy.

What’s New: The 2010 showcase of all complete Project Citizen entries is scheduled for April 15-16, 2010. In-school presentation dates can be scheduled any time during the school year prior to April 15. Judging of in-school presentations can be arranged with Cynthia H. Cothran at (803) 252-5139 or ccothran@scbar.org.

Grant Opportunities for Project Citizen Students
DoSomething.org aims to inspire, support and celebrate youth taking action, so they offering a variety of grants, ranging from $500 to $1000, to young people seeking to make a positive impact in their community. Complete details can be found at www.dosomething.org/grants.

If your students have worn out their Project Citizen books and you need a replacement set, e-mail Cynthia Cothran at ccothran@scbar.org to get a new FREE classroom set of 30 textbooks as well as a teacher’s guide.

Interested in starting this program at your school? Click here for dates and registration information.

sro corner (click here to learn more)

Description: Street Law is a course in practical law. It was designed to provide students with knowledge of what to do when confronted with a legal problem. Information is presented through student-centered activities that enable teens to develop as effective citizens.  Most often, Street Law, is taught as a one-semester social studies elective or in place of a government course. The curriculum can also be used by teachers of a practical business law class. The curriculum is correlated to the state standards and is on the SC textbook adopted list.  The curriculum includes a teacher's manual as well as test banks.

What’s New: Street Law is hosting a Supreme Court lesson plan competition for all educators. The winning lesson will be featured on Street Law’s Web site during Supreme Court Week. They are looking for lessons that are appropriate for secondary students and focus on the functions or operations of the U.S. Supreme Court or on a U.S. Supreme Court case. Entries will be judged on clarity, use of interactive strategies and methods, and usefulness. The winning author will also receive a Street Law Supreme Court gift pack, including books about the Supreme Court, Street Law’s Classroom Guide to Mock Trials and Moot Courts, and items from Street Law, Inc.’s gift shop. Full details and registration can be found at: www.streetlaw.org/contest.

A two-day training is scheduled for March 25-26, 2010. Click here for registration information.

we the people (click here to learn more)

Description: We the People is an in-depth study of American history with an emphasis on understanding the formation of the Constitution and its interpretation throughout history. Students compete in a mock congressional hearing and discuss critical issues regarding American government, the founding fathers and current events based on a constitutional perspective.

What’s New: The 2009-10 competition season for We the People has begun. The competition questions were released on September 2 and are available on the Web site. The 2009-10 competition is scheduled for January 8, 2010, in Columbia. To register for the competition or a FREE two-day training, click here for dates and registration information.

If your students have worn out their We the People books and you need a replacement set, e-mail Donald Lanier at dlanier@scbar.org to get a new FREE classroom set of 30 textbooks as well as a teacher’s guide.

youth court (click here to learn more)

Description: Do you know what one of the fastest growing youth diversion programs in the nation is? The answer is Youth Court. There are 35 separate youth courts serving many different communities and schools throughout South Carolina. In communities, Youth Court is a juvenile diversion option intended to keep young people with no criminal record out of the juvenile justice system, allowing them a second chance to maintain their clean juvenile records. In schools, Youth Court can handle actual criminal offenses in which the school resource officer is involved, or it can be inserted into the discipline code to handle violations of school rules. Youth Court functions like a traditional court with all the key roles in place. The difference is that all of those roles are played by youth.

What’s New: With the reinvigoration of the South Carolina Youth Court Association, the S.C. Bar now serves as a clearinghouse for information and a resource for reaching the S.C. Youth Court Association. For a list of Youth Court publications held by the S.C. Bar, please e-mail Donald Lanier at dlanier@scbar.org.

“You see things and say ‘Why’? But I see things and say ‘Why not?’”
—G.B. Shaw

bar foundation
LRE programs are made possible with the support of the South Carolina Bar Foundation's IOLTA grant and two program grants through the Center for Civic Education.
civic ed


South Carolina Bar Law Related Education Division
950 Taylor Street • P.O. Box 608 • Columbia, SC 29202
Phone: (803) 252-5139 Fax: (803) 771-0419 E-mail: lre@scbar.org