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Seniors explore constitutional law through Mock Trial

After over a month of careful preparation, the senior class turned the BCB from the Bachmann Collaboration Building into the Bachmann Courthouse Building for the annual Senior Mock Trial. 

Student lawyers from the AP Government class presented well-reasoned opening and closing arguments and cross-examined witnesses and experts played by Prep faculty, staff, and students who were "subpoenaed" for the event. Volunteer judges with actual trial experience were recruited from the Prep community to preside over the event with professionalism and gravity. Student court clerks and bailiffs kept everything running smoothly and ensured that the stringent trial rules were enforced. Finally, student jurors deliberated and decided on the guilt of the fictional defendant.

The Senior Mock Trial has been a tradition of the AP Government class for several years. Aimed not at merely preparing students for the AP exam, it provides firsthand experience of constitutional law in practice, cementing many of the year's lessons by getting to apply them hands-on. 

"I try to hit the right balance between helping it be as realistic as possible, and also reminding them of all the things that are not real in a mock trial, like the fact that 95% of real defendants never go to trial because of plea bargain agreements and all the other sorts of biases that come into play in the real criminal justice system." —William Bellaimey, AP Government teacher