Students in grades 9 to 12 portray each of the principals in the cast of courtroom characters. Student teams study a hypothetical case, conduct legal research, receive guidance from volunteer attorneys in courtroom procedure and trial preparation, and present their case before volunteer judges.
The Mock Trial brings together students, teachers, and legal professionals from around the county to: Instill in our youth a deeper understanding of citizenship through values expressed in our Constitution and its Bill of Rights; Educate young people to become active and responsible participants in our society; Help students acquire a working knowledge of our judicial system; Develop analytical abilities and communication skills; Provide an understanding of the obligations and responsibilities required of our societies members; and Extend and reinforce the History and Social Science Content Standards for California Public Schools.
Since 1983 the Ventura County Office of Education has partnered with the Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF) to provide the Mock Trial for our students. The goal of the Constitutional Rights Foundation is to "instill in our nation's youth a deeper understanding of citizenship through values expressed in our Constitution and its Bill of Rights and to educate young people to become active and responsible participants in our society.” Mock Trial is designed to clarify the workings of our legal institutions for students through first-hand experience.