National Center for State Courts civics essay contest for grades 3-12: What does it mean to be a U.S. citizen?

The National Center for State Courts is sponsoring its fourth annual national civics essay contest for elementary, middle, and high school students.

In recognition of Law Day, May 1, 2017, the essay contest focuses on the 14th Amendment, which addresses citizenship rights and equal protection of the laws.  NCSC is asking 3rd-12th grade students the following question: What does it mean to be a U.S. citizen?

We encourage teachers to educate students about the 14th Amendment and incorporate NCSC’s essay contest question into their lesson plan(s).

Submissions will be divided into three groups: 3rd-5th graders; 6th-8th graders; and 9th-12th graders. Entries for all grade levels must be 100 words or less and typed and submitted online at www.ncsc.org/contest.

PRIZES:

  • First place winners will receive a $100 Amazon gift card.
  • Second place winners will receive a $50 Amazon gift card.
  • Third place winners will receive a $25 Amazon gift card.

First- and second-place winners will also receive a class set of NCSC’s graphic novel, Justice Case Files.

­All submissions are due February 24, 2017.

Complete contest details and the contest flyer are available at www.ncsc.org/contest.

Publication note: my article in latest Judicature on how legislatures (state and local) create specific courts

I have this

Disorder in the courts: The varied ways states establish and oversee courts presents challenges for reform

in the latest edition of Judicature. The article examines not only the constitutional provisions related to courts, but also the specific mechanism legislatures (state and local) use to create them. For example Florida’s County Courts are built right into the constitution in each county, whereas many local courts are broadly authorized by state statute, but a local ordinance sets up the specific court (e.g. Municipal Court of the City of Z).

National Center for State Courts 2017 Civics Education Contest for Grades 3-12

Information and signup here here.

Contest:

In recognition of Law Day, May 1, 2017, the National Center for State Courts is sponsoring a contest for elementary, middle school, and high school students. The contest entries will be divided into three groups: 3rd-5th graders, 6th-8th graders and 9th-12th graders.

Each grade group is encouraged to answer the following essay question:
What does it mean to be a U.S. citizen?

Rules for essay contest:
* Entries must be 100 words or less.
* Entries must be typed and submitted in the form below.

Prizes:

  • One first place winner in each age group will receive a $100 Amazon gift card and a class set of Justice Case Files graphic novels.

  • One second place winner in each age group will receive a $50 Amazon gift card and a class set of Justice Case Files graphic novels.

  • One third place winner in each age group will receive a $25 Amazon gift card and a class set of Justice Case Files graphic novels.

Deadline

Friday, February 24, 2017.

Voting & Judging

First, second, and third place winners from each grade level will be selected by NCSC staff members and judges from around the country based on creativity, originality, overall quality and adherence to the theme. The winners will be notified by e-mail or phone by April 28, 2017. Winning entries may be shared on NCSC’s social media outlets (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Vimeo), as well as NCSC publications and websites.

Official Rules & Guidelines

Please be advised that by submitting an essay, parents give NCSC permission to use essays online or in print publications. Read the Official Rules and Guidelines.

 

 

Election 2016: Extended coverage on the 4 ballot items up for a vote this November – podcasts and videos and publications (oh my!)

I’ll be discussing the 4 ballot items on the ballot that affect the courts here on the blog, but I’ve recorded/published several items that readers might be interested in.

For fans of paper (or at least PDF) I wrote this for NCSC’s new Trends: Close Up publication.

I recorded this item for the newest NCSC video series call Court Buzz.

For those who like podcasts, I also did this podcast for NCSC’s other (relatively) new product/podcast series called Court Talk.

For fourth year in a row Gavel to Gavel named an ABA Journal Top 100 law blog!

Blawg100HonoreeBadge

I just received word that for the fourth year in a row Gavel to Gavel the blog has been named one of the ABA Journal Top 100 Blawgs (law blogs). It is an incredible honor and it (literally) could not have happened without the support of you, the readers. Thanks!

I also want to thank LexisNexis, which provides the access to the legislative database that is the backbone of Gavel to Gavel.