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Hawaii Supreme Court Holds Oral Argument at McKinley High School

As part of the Judiciary’s Courts in the Community outreach program, the Hawaii Supreme Court heard oral argument today at McKinley High School.

mckinleyAbout 470 students from McKinley High School, St. Andrew’s Priory, Saint Francis School, Kamehameha Schools – Kapālama, Damien Memorial School, Hālau Kū Māna Charter School, University Laboratory School, and Farrington High School, as well as Mid-Pacific Institute, had the opportunity to learn more about the Judiciary’s role in government and its function in resolving disputes in a democratic society.

Under the program, the Hawaii Supreme Court convenes in schools to hear oral argument in cases pending before the court. This is the eighth argument in the program, which began in 2012.  To prepare, the participating juniors and seniors from each school studied a curriculum developed by the Kamehameha V Judiciary History Center and the Students for Public Outreach and Civic Education of the University of Hawaii’s William S. Richardson School of Law.

mckinley-closeupsAttorneys from the Hawaii State Bar Association also volunteered their time and facilitated a moot court activity in the participating classrooms, where the students had the opportunity to argue the case themselves before attending the Courts in the Community event.

mckinley1“Our Courts in the Community program is about hands-on civics education and providing students with a chance to go beyond the textbooks by observing a real Supreme Court oral argument in person. Through this experience, we hope that the students realize it is a process with integrity, one that’s designed to get the truth. That understanding is vital to the future of our democracy,” said Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald. “I would like to extend a special mahalo to the teachers, the Hawaii State Bar Association, and the dozens of volunteer attorneys who helped make this happen. These invaluable partnerships are what make the program a success.”

mckinley2The Hawaii State Bar Association (HSBA) and the Hawaii State Bar Foundation generously provided the students with lunches and transportation to and from their schools on Oahu.

“I’d like to thank our attorneys who enthusiastically volunteered to visit participating classrooms for pre-event discussions and preparations,” said Jodi Lei Kimura Yi, HSBA President. “It was exciting to see the students intently following the arguments and asking very probing questions after the official court proceedings.”

mckinley-vipThe court heard oral argument in the case of State v. Trinque. Oral argument was followed by two separate question-and-answer sessions for the students; one with the attorneys and another with the five justices.

Hawaii Supreme Court Takes Oral Argument to Big Island

Today, the Hawaii Supreme Court heard oral arguments at the Kealakehe High School Gymnasium before an audience of approximately 600 students from Kealakehe High School, Kohala High School, Konawaena High School, Kau High School, Kua O Ka La New Century Public Charter School, Makua Lani Christian Academy and West Hawaii Explorations Academy, as well as members of the public.

Approximately 600 students watched a Hawaii Supreme Court oral argument in Kailua-Kona. After the proceeding, the students had the opportunity to participate in a question-and-answer session with the justices.

Approximately 600 students watched a Hawaii Supreme Court oral argument in Kailua-Kona. After the proceeding, the students had the opportunity to participate in a question-and-answer session with the justices.

It was part of the Judiciary’s Courts in the Community outreach program, which educates students and informs the general public about the Judiciary’s role in government and its function in resolving disputes in a democratic society.

The court heard oral arguments in Molfino v. Yuen. The oral argument was followed by two separate question-and-answer sessions for the students; one with the attorneys and another with the five justices.

“We wanted to take an oral argument, which would have otherwise been held in Honolulu, and bring it to the West Hawaii community. This gives students the opportunity to go beyond the textbooks and experience a Supreme Court oral argument in person,” said Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald. “We thank the teachers and the West Hawaii Bar Association for their time, commitment, and partnership in making today possible.”

To prepare for the oral argument, the participating juniors and seniors from each high school studied a curriculum developed by the Kamehameha V Judiciary History Center and the Students for Public Outreach and Civic Education of the University of Hawaii’s William S. Richardson School of Law. The students’ study was followed by a moot court activity facilitated by members of the West Hawaii Bar Association. The Hawaii State Bar Association and the Hawaii State Bar Foundation generously provided the students with lunches and transportation to and from Kealakehe High School.