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Issue 1 Winter /Spring 2016




Sojourn to the Past, Enlightenment for the Future

FOUNDATION Sojourn to the Past, Enlightenment for the Future Mahoning Valley Sojourn to the Past is

Mahoning Valley Sojourn to the Past is a nonprofit organization created by a small group of educators whose mission is “to enable individuals to participate in educational activities that encourage personal growth.”

By Penny Wells, retired educator, Youngstown City Schools

is an empowering, leadership development experience that takes participants on a ten-day transformative, moving classroom, living history journey along the path of the Civil Rights Movement through five states in the American South. In the fall of 2006, I invited Mr. Steinberg to Volney Rogers Junior High School, in Youngstown, Ohio, to speak to junior high and high school students about the hateful language they use and how it adversely affects others. By spring 2007, six Youngstown high school students and I made the Sojourn journey.

In the summer of 2006, I attended a Civil Rights workshop by Jeff Steinberg called “Sojourn to the Past.” Sojourn to the Past

Sojourn students not only have hands-on history lessons on the Civil Rights Movement, they also meet many veterans of the Movement, including Minnijean Brown Trickey and Elizabeth Eckford of the Little Rock Nine, Congressman John Lewis, and the Chris McNair family whose daughter and sister, Denise, was killed in the bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham. They also study the sites that changed the course of human rights in America and learn lessons of the Civil Rights Movement including justice, hope, non-violence, compassion, tolerance, civic responsibility, and forgiveness. Students are challenged and asked, “What are you willing to put your life on the line for?” This is an empowering trip for the students. They see ordinary people from history who stepped up and made a difference, and now these students realize they also can step up and make a difference. They return home with newly acquired leadership skills and a sense of hope knowing they have the power to make a positive change first in themselves and then in their schools and community.

THE SOJOURN EXPERIENCE Atlanta – Selma/Montgomery/Birmingham – Hattiesburg – Jackson – Little Rock – Memphis

Before students depart, they must read John Lewis’s book, Walking With the Wind, and answer study guide questions. Students also have an airplane assignment that requires them to read Dr. King’s Six Principles of Non-Violence. Upon arrival in Atlanta, students visit the King museum and gravesite. They also learn about and discuss institutionalized racism. Students hear from Congressman John Lewis and Rev. Clark Olson, who witnessed the killing of Rev. James Reeb in Selma after “Bloody Sunday.” Students travel

to Selma and walk across the Edmond Pettus Bridge, just as the marchers did on Bloody Sunday. In Montgomery, students sit on the steps of the capitol where Martin Luther King Jr., spoke and also spend time at the Civil Rights Memorial, The students are asked to reflect on how the experiences affect them personally, and what they would be willing to do when they see an injustice. (Continued on page 4)

to do when they see an injustice. (Continued on page 4) Pictured L to R: Mahoning

Pictured L to R: Mahoning Valley Sojourn students Micah Smith and Sarina Chatman, Penny Wells, Dr. Bernice King, Dexter King; second row, Sojourn to the Past Founder & Executive Director Jeff Steinberg. Photo courtesy of Penny Wells, taken at the annual King Center “Salute to Greatness” Awards Dinner, January 16, 2016.


Teachable Moment


Turning Passion into Action


Moot Court Case Capsule


Female Firsts in the Ohio Legislature


Teachers Experience Ohio Government Empower Students through Youth for Justice/Project Citizen Programs



Teachers Enhance Constitution Teaching Methods



It’s More than a Competition

TEACHABLE MOMENT It’s More than a Competition By Ryan Suskey, Director of Professional Development & Programs

By Ryan Suskey, Director of Professional Development & Programs

As winter turns to spring, the

testing season is once more upon us. At OCLRE it is also testing season, but of a decidedly

different sort. At the risk of expressing

a rather unpopular opinion, I would like

to advocate for more testing. Before the alarm bells sound, however, what I am actually advocating for is using OCLRE programs and materials in new and different ways.

All OCLRE student-centered programs culminate in an activity, competition, or showcase. Whether the culminating activity is students presenting arguments and testimony in a mock trial, or testifying in a simulated congressional hearing for We the People, the spring semester is when OCLRE students demonstrate their newly acquired skills and knowledge. In each instance, students are guided by a teacher or legal advisor to become experts on a topic, and to put that expertise into action.

OCLRE programs truly are more than competitions. The culminating activities are designed as authentic assessments for the program, focusing on the skills and knowledge gained rather than the drive to win. This educational goal is first and foremost in our minds as we plan the programs each year. Each decision

is weighed against its impact on the

educational outcomes for students.

For readers unfamiliar with the term, authentic assessments are roughly as they sound: assessments designed to more closely mirror authentic scenarios that students would encounter in the “real world.” The Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools (CORS) established three criteria for good authentic assessments: assessments must involve student construction of knowledge through disciplined inquiry having value beyond the classroom.¹ Knowing that our students will soon face the OGT or OAA, the question of “why should we add one more assessment?” naturally follows.

Consider a shift in perspective: Dr. Fred Newmann of the University of Wisconsin emphasizes that “promoting authentic intellectual work should not be seen as a project that adds yet a new or different educational goal,” but instead that it be viewed as “a framework for teaching and assessing any goal that relies on knowledge.”² In this way, authentic assessment opportunities in OCLRE programs are not one more test to burden teachers, but are instead a tool for teaching and assessing deeper mastery of civics content.

“If you look back in history, you will find the core mission of public education in America was to create places of civic virtue for our children and for our society. As education undergoes the rigors of re-examination and the need for reinvention, it is crucial to remember that the key role of public schools is to preserve democracy and, that as battered as we might be, our mission is central to the future of this county.”

-- Paul D. Houston, executive director of the American Association of School Administrators (1994-2008)

Ultimately, students benefit from this shift in perspective, as teachers prepare them not only for future life as citizens, but also for better performance in school. Research demonstrates that students taught and assessed in more authentic ways actually outperform their traditionally taught peers, even on multiple choice assessments. When teachers utilize authentic assessments, their methods of instruction are geared toward this higher bar for mastery. When these students are later tasked with lower rigor summative assessments (e.g. multiple choice standardized tests) their greater mastery of content transfers and higher scores result. Research from the field further suggests that

the performance boost for students in authentic classrooms could be 30-60 percentile points higher than traditionally taught peers.³

OCLRE programs are ready-made authentic assessments, with teacher resources and tools, asking students to participate in activities they will likely encounter as active and engaged citizens. Teachers who implement OCLRE programs can help students build skills such as analytical thinking, document analysis, taking part in civil discussion of controversial issues, public speaking, and persuasive writing.

Whether your students join us in Columbus for a state competition or showcase, or you use the programs in your classroom, student participation in culminating activities creates opportunities for your students to further their mastery of civics content.


¹ Fred M. Newmann and Gary G.Wehlage, Successful School Restructuring (Madison, WI: center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools, 1995) and “Authentic pedagogy:

Standards that Boost Student Performance,” issues in Restructuring Schools, CORS Issue Report No. 8 (Spring 1995), passim. ² Fred M. Newmann M. Bruce King and Dana Carmichael,Authentic Instruction and Assessment (Des Moines, IA: State of Iowa Department of Education, 2007), 11. ³ Id., 17-18.

Instruction and Assessment (Des Moines, IA: State of Iowa Department of Education, 2007), 11. ³ Id.

Turning Passion into Action:

OCLRE Alumna Gives Back to Local Community

into Action: OCLRE Alumna Gives Back to Local Community By Aisha Sharif Aisha Sharif is a

By Aisha Sharif

Aisha Sharif is a sophomore at Stanford University majoring in International Relations. Aisha is a graduate of Pickerington Central High School, where she participated on its mock trial team.

As a fourteen year old entering high school, I knew two things about my life—I wanted to get good grades, and I wanted to be a singer. Well,I guess I knew a few more things too… I definitely didn’t want to be an attorney, and I wanted to be on the debate team. As my cross country season was coming to a close, I saw signs to try out for mock trial, which I mistakenly thought was debate.The rest is history.

The impact that mock trial had on me is more than I could have ever imagined. Mock trial taught me the importance of working in teams, showed me how to shed my shy shell, and gave me confidence. It also made law school a serious grad school consideration.

I have always been passionate about education and trying to combat education inequities.When I found out about East Palo Alto Stanford Academy (EPASA), I knew that I wanted to be a part of the program. EPASA is a teaching, tutoring, and mentoring program for seventh and eighth graders from East Palo Alto and the Ravenswood City School District run through Stanford University’s Haas Center for Public Service. During the school year, students have class on Saturday mornings and tutoring and

recreation in the afternoon.The summer program is a five week program and students have English and math class in the morning and electives in the afternoon.This past summer, I was fortunate enough to be an elective teacher.

I thought long and hard about what I wanted to teach in my class. I brainstormed more than a few ideas, but when I hit mock trial, I knew that it was the right choice. I reflected on all that mock trial had done for me and provided me with, and I knew that I wanted to share those experiences with students.

Designing a mock trial course for middle schoolers was quite a challenge. Honestly, teaching middle schoolers is a challenge, even without the added bonus of trying to use a high school mock trial case. I had my lesson plans set out. We would start with talking about public speaking, then we would dive into the case, going through the case briefs, witness statements, and exhibits. Each person would write a direct and cross examination, opening statement and closing argument. As a final project, students would actually conduct a trial. Needless to say, all of those things didn’t happen in the eighteen hour- long summer class.Together, we had to work through the initial hurdle of engagement in the class, and the struggle of gaining full participation that never completely went away throughout my time teaching. We had to learn what a mock trial was. However, the two main goals that I set out with were achieved: improve public speaking and team work. From day one, I had the students step to the front of the class and present. I had students work as partners and in groups

several times a week. By the end of summer,

I saw more growth than I could have ever imagined.

We may not have had exactly the final project that I had planned, but I was amazed by what I saw.The opening statements and closing arguments carried more passion than I could have anticipated.The direct examinations were rehearsed between the witnesses and attorneys.The final trials were by no means perfect, but I could see all of the work and progress that was made to get to that point. I couldn’t have been any prouder.

By the end of the class, I had requests to teach a second class next summer, Of course I had students who did not enjoy the class, but the overwhelming majority was in favor. I could see the budding attorneys in the crowd.At the end of the program, I was just so happy that I was able to share

an experience that was so significant to me with other students.Words cannot even begin to convey how much this past summer meant to me. I would undoubtedly encourage anyone with a passion for education and

a love for mock trial to spend a summer

engaging youth with mock trial and see the joy that ensues.

Editor’s Note: While Aisha wanted to share with students a case she studied as a high school student, OCLRE also has a Middle School Mock Trial program. Middle school cases are based on literature commonly read in Ohio middle schools.

To see the list of available cases, visit http://, or contact for more information.

Moot Court Case Capsule

for more information. Moot Court Case Capsule As 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the Miranda

As 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the Miranda v. Arizona decision, OCLRE’s Moot Court case is designed to engage high school students in conversations about what Miranda means today, and how the decision translates to juveniles.

Sarah Stewart just started high school at Grassland Valley High, and is hoping to make a name for herself by recreating a prank her older sister once played on a rival high school. Inadvertently, Sarah causes more damage than intended, and ruins the rival’s field days before their homecoming game. Sarah is questioned at her school and later arrested and adjudicated as delinquent.

Moot Court participants will explore Sarah’s rights during this interrogation, and the impact these rights might have on the outcome of her case.

For additional information, including ordering case materials, visit http://www., or contact Program Coordinator Caitlyn Smith

In Birmingham, students visit the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church and hear the sermon Dr. King preached during the funeral for the Four Little Girls, who were killed in the church by a bomb set by members of the Ku Klux Klan, and meet the mother of Denise McNair, one of the four little girls. They walk across the street from the church to Kelly Ingram Park where children were sprayed with fire hoses and attacked by dogs because they were marching for equal rights. In Meridian, Mississippi, they visit the gravesite of James Chaney, one of the three civil rights workers murdered by the Klan during Freedom Summer, and meet his daughter, who was only ten days old when he was killed. In Hattiesburg, Mississippi, students meet the Dahmer family who were targeted by the Klan because their husband/father offered to pay the poll tax for anyone who could not afford it. Vernon Dahmer was killed protecting his family. In Jackson, the students meet Jerry Mitchell, a reporter with the Jackson Clarion Ledger, who found evidence that helped solve numerous murders committed by the Klan and obtain convictions, even decades later. The students also sit in the driveway where Medgar Evers was murdered and again reflect on how they can make a difference. In Little Rock, they walk up the steps of Central High School just like the Little Rock Nine did after President Eisenhower sent in federal troops to protect them, and they listen to Elizabeth Eckford describe the terror of the first day of school. The trip ends in Memphis at the Lorraine Hotel, where Martin Luther King, Jr., was assassinated on April 4, 1968. Before leaving Memphis, students develop an action plan to implement in their schools and community when they return.

While on the trip, students read, write essays, prepare answers to questions, reflect, and write thank you letters to all speakers. Except for a camera, no electronics are allowed. This is a transformative experience for all participants.

ACTION PLANS & ACCOMPLISHMENTS 2016 marks the tenth year that Youngstown students will have the opportunity to sojourn to the past. In as many years, students have translated their experiences into action to benefit their communities and state.

In 2007 and 2008, students created an action plan to register high school students to vote. The 2009 students continued voter registration and organized a non-violence week in their high schools. They also developed their own non-violence workshop; designed non-violence t-shirts; wrote daily PA announcements, explaining each principle of non-violence and highlighting a person who exemplified this principle; and created a non-violence word wall. The school superintendent asked the students to extend non-violence week into all Youngstown schools. The students even had five billboards created and placed around the city, which displayed quotes about non- violence.

The 2010 Sojourners petitioned the Youngstown Board of Education, Youngstown City Council, and Youngstown State University Trustees requesting that the first week in October be declared “Non-Violence Week,” and to make it an annual event. All three groups passed resolutions creating an annual Non-Violence Week in the schools, the city and the campus.

The 2011 Sojourn students continued voter registration and education efforts and a planned Non-Violence Parade and Rally, which was held on October 2, 2011 as the kick off to Non-Violence Week. More than 500 participants braved the 42 degree, rainy weather to take part in the parade. Sojourn students conducted non-violence workshops in elementary and middle schools and, at the request of Sojourn students, Congressman John Lewis spoke at East High School to share his experiences during the Civil Rights Movement and his lifelong commitment to non-violence.

In 2012, the Mahoning County Commissioners passed a resolution recognizing Non-Violence Week county-wide. That same year, at Sojourn students’ request, the “Non-Violence Week in Ohio” bill was introduced in the Ohio Senate by Senator Joe Schiavoni. Sojourn students were present on July 11, 2013 when Governor Kasich signed the bill into law, declaring the first week in October as Non-Violence Week in Ohio.

Since the program’s inception, Mahoning Valley Sojourn students have registered more than 1,000 high school and college students to vote and spoken about the importance of voting. Sojourn participants have said they are more aware of the words they use and the need to speak out when they see an injustice.

IMPACT In the words of Minnijean Brown Trickey, “Unaware and prideful teens, begin the trip only to return home as open-minded, respectful, and committed young adults.”

Youngstown Sojourn students say the experience has impacted them in the following ways:

“Going on Sojourn has truly changed my life. Not only am I more outspoken about the things that I feel passionately about, but I now speak out when I see others being bullied or put down. Sojourn opened my eyes to all the negativity in the world, and let me know that it is my responsibility to do something about it. I find that I now step out of my comfort zone just a little more than I used to. Being on Sojourn has made me more willing to stand up and speak out against injustice.”

“We have learned immense lessons – the importance of service to the community, the need for non-violent action where you are willing to do what is necessary, the necessity to sacrifice for what is right and the power I have within myself.”

“Sojourn has shown us how ordinary people can seize the power and make a difference in the world. It made us aware that we have the power to make a change in our own lives, in our schools, and in our community. We can be a beacon of hope.”

HONORS Mahoning Valley Sojourn to the Past has received numerous honors for its efforts to educate about and promote non-violence. Most recently, the Mahoning Valley Sojourn to the Past program was awarded the Coretta Scott King A.N.G.E.L. (Advancing Non-violence through Generations of Exceptional Leadership) Award on January 16, 2016 in Atlanta, Georgia.

Among the program’s distinguished honors:

• November, 2011 – Volunteer award from HandsOn Volunteer Network

• January, 2012 – MLK Youth Award from the Ohio MLK Commission

• January, 2013 – MLK Diversity Award from Youngstown State University

• July 11, 2013 – Governor John Kasich signed into law students’ “Non-Violence Week in Ohio” bill

A Woman’s Place is in the House….And Senate:

Female Firsts in the Ohio Legislature

By Pierce J. Reed, Treasurer, OCLRE Board of Directors; Senior Judicial Attorney to Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor, Supreme Court of Ohio

This is the second installment of a series on great “firsts” in government. In this edition, we focus on women in Ohio’s legislature.

As you learned in the first of our series, Courting Change, Ohio Supreme Court Justice Florence Allen, the first female judge in the United States, was elected by Ohio voters just one year after women gained the right to vote through the 19th Amendment. Notably, Ohio was the fifth state in the nation to ratify the amendment, doing so on June 16, 1919.

Women had been working for the right to vote for years before the amendment was passed. In part, the arrival of World War I helped it finally succeed. As one of Ohio’s first female legislators, Senator Maude Comstock Waitt, described, when World War I broke out,“the dollhouse opened and women came out, never to go back again.” Although women may have broken out of the dollhouse, they were not immediately welcomed with full rights, including the right to vote. In fact, women were arrested (and later convicted and imprisoned) for demonstrating for the right to vote at the White House on the day that America entered World War I. In part, that demonstration was driven by President Woodrow Wilson’s refusal to support suffrage even though he was asking Americans to join in the war effort “to make the world safe for democracy.” As one leader of the National Women’s Party argued in a letter to the New York Times in the wake of those arrests:

“… America, which has laid claim to leadership in world democracy, allows women to be unlawfully arrested through its Government at Washington for merely doing their patriotic duty – urging the wisdom and justice of the great ideal of democracy. Women cannot be so unpatriotic as not to complain of a grievous injustice which denies them freedom at home while they are asked to send their sons abroad to fight for world democracy. If democracy is noble, if it is a principle, an ideal worth dying for, then is it not an extraordinary attitude on the part of the President and Congress which allows women no right even to appeal for justice, let alone receive it?”

But women did win the right to vote. And serving in government followed shortly thereafter. The 19th Amendment was incorporated into the United States Constitution in 1920. Two years later, Ohio elected the first six women to Ohio’s 85th General Assembly - two to the Senate and four to the House of Representatives. One of them, Representative Adelaide Sterling Ott, remarked,“If women of today are to enjoy political suffrage, they must be willing to assume their share of the making and enforcing of the laws of our government.” Women listened.

More than 150 women have followed in the footsteps of those first six female Ohio legislators. One of the many remarkable ones is Ethel Swanbeck, who served 11 consecutive terms from 1955 to 1976. (A scholarship named in her honor is still awarded to a graduating high school senior who enrolls in a health field at an Ohio college or university. html). Another history-making leader in the House is Jo Ann Davidson, who served more than two decades, from 1980 to 2001.

In 1995, she became the first woman elected speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives. As Davidson ascended to her seat in the House, Betty Montgomery left her seat in the Ohio Senate to become Ohio’s first female Attorney General, where she served two terms before becoming Ohio’s first female Auditor of State.

The first African American woman to serve in the Ohio House was Helen Rankin, who was appointed in 1978 and was then elected by her constituents to eight additional terms. In 2011, Representative Nickie Antonio – a former teacher – became the first openly LGBT member of the Ohio General Assembly. She continues to serve today.

Ohio’s first congresswoman, Frances Payne Bingham Bolton, entered the U.S. House of Representatives in 1939 after the death of her husband. But she earned the respect of her constituents and peers, serving an additional fourteen terms including three terms alongside her son, Oliver P. Bolton, thereby becoming the first and only mother and child to serve together in Congress. Bolton was distinguished in her own right, however, particularly for her work in foreign affairs and public health. She became the first female to lead a congressional delegation overseas, and the first female in the congressional delegation to the United Nations be appointed to a congressional delegation (by President Dwight D. Eisenhower).

In 1999, Stephanie Tubbs Jones became the first African American woman from Ohio to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. She took the seat formerly held by Louis Stokes, the first African- American male to be elected congressman from Ohio.

In the wake of that great election in 1922 when women could first vote, Ohio Representative Lulu Thomas remarked,“women have a place in the political world.” Almost a century later, however, it is clear that they have yet to have an equal place in the political world. Although women comprise slightly more than 50% of the Ohio and United States populations, they hold only 25% of the seats in the legislatures of Ohio and other states. On the federal level, there is even less gender equality: only 20% of the members of Congress are women, only three of Ohio’s twelve members in the U.S. House of Representatives are women, and Ohio has yet to elect a woman to the U.S. Senate. Maybe one of your students will be the one to break that barrier.

one of your students will be the one to break that barrier. From L-R they are:

From L-R they are: Maude Comstock Waitt, Frances P.B. Bolton, Ethel G. Swanbeck, L. Helen Rankin, Jo Ann Davidson, Betty Montgomery, Nickie Antonio, and Stephanie Tubbs Jones

Teachers Experience Ohio Government, Meet the State Leaders

OCLRE hosted 30 teachers from around the state on November 17 & 18, 2015 for its Ohio Government in Action (OGIA) conference. Teachers observed oral arguments for State v. Barker and debriefed the case with attorneys for appellant and appellee; had lunch and conversation with justices of the Supreme Court of Ohio, including Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor, Justice Judith Ann Lanzinger, Justice Sharon Kennedy, Justice William O’Neill and Justice Judith French; met with members of the Ohio General Assembly and Secretary of State

Jon Husted; took a behind-the-scenes tour of the Ohio Statehouse, and even had a bit of time to network and share lessons and resources with fellow participants.

We want to know: what topics and speakers would you like featured in Ohio Government in Action 2016? Let OCLRE know how to make OGIA the best professional development for government teachers. Contact Ryan Suskey at

teachers. Contact Ryan Suskey at . Ohio Government in Action participants stand on the marble

Ohio Government in Action participants stand on the marble map of Ohio in the Ohio Statehouse “Map Room”. Teachers stand on counties in which they teach/reside.

Teachers stand on counties in which they teach/reside. Teachers share lessons during Ohio Government in Action

Teachers share lessons during Ohio Government in Action (OGIA).

share lessons during Ohio Government in Action (OGIA). Empower Students through Youth for Justice/ Project Citizen

Empower Students through Youth for Justice/ Project Citizen Programs

Do your students have a keen sense of fairness and justice? Do they talk about problems in the school or community, but struggle with how to solve them or raise awareness about important issues? Are they able to effectively articulate their concerns and reach out to key decision makers?

OCLRE’sYouth for Justice and Project Citizen programs provide academic structure through which young people in grades 5-12 can take an active role in addressing the very problems they and their peers face. Students have tackled problems big and small, from violence and bullying, to eliminating disrespectful language and unhealthy lunches.

There is still time to get your students involved! Visit http://www. for details and important dates. Or, if you’d like to schedule a professional development in your district, contact Ryan Suskey at

Or, if you’d like to schedule a professional development in your district, contact Ryan Suskey at

Ohio Teachers Enhance Constitutional Understanding and Teaching Methods

In October 2015, the Center for Civic Education (CCE) was awarded a U.S. Department of Education SEED (Supporting Effective Educator Development) Grant for nearly $17 million over three years. Funds will be used to provide professional development and to expand the research of the efficacy of the CCE trainings. As part of this training, teachers will hear from scholars and engage in an in-depth study of the history, underlying philosophies, evolution, and application of the U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights, and other founding documents.

OCLRE serves as the administrative site for Ohio teachers participating in the newly created James Madison Legacy Project. OCLRE will work in partnership with its counterparts in Indiana and Kentucky to provide local and regional professional development. Throughout the next three years, 23 Ohio teachers will be among the more than 2,000 teachers nationwide who receive professional development through the James Madison Legacy Project, developing their content knowledge and teaching techniques.

Nine Ohio teachers are taking part in the project for the 2015-2016 school year:

• Jennifer Bill, Shaw High School, East Cleveland

• Brandi Brown, Columbiana South Side Middle School, Columbiana

• Deborah Glynn,Aiken New Tech School, Cincinnati

• Jeff Kallas,Van Wert High School,Van Wert

• Carol Klocheska, Byrnedale Middle School,Toledo

• Brooke Meyer, St. Paul School, Norwalk

• Allison Papish, Strongsville High School, Strongsville

• Jim Worden, Columbus North International High School, Columbus

• Matthew Wunderle, Ravenna High School, Ravenna

The James Madison Legacy Project focuses on serving high-needs populations, with the goal of increasing student achievement in civics and government. As such, OCLRE encourages applications from teachers in schools with a high percentage of students receiving free/ reduced lunch, those served by Rural Local Educational Agencies, schools serving students with disabilities, and schools with high numbers of students below grade level or at risk for not graduating on time.

Applications for the 2016-17 school year are due May 1. For details, visit madison-legacy-project, or contact Tim Kalgreen: or (614) 485-3515.

Tim Kalgreen: or (614) 485-3515. Supreme Court Showdown: Students Learn About Struggle for

Supreme Court Showdown: Students Learn About Struggle for Equality on Bench

By Tim Kalgreen, OCLRE program coordinator

As part of its Forum on the Law series, on October 20, 2015 the Supreme Court of Ohio hosted author Wil Haygood at the Thomas J. Moyer Ohio Judicial Center to talk about his newest book, Showdown:

Thurgood Marshall and the Supreme Court Nomination that Changed America. The audience was made up of high school students and teachers from central Ohio, who learned about Justice Marshall and the significance of his nomination to the nation’s highest court.

Showdown tells the story of Thurgood Marshall’s nomination to and confirmation as the first African-American on U.S. Supreme Court, despite the effort by Southern senators to block Marshall’s confirmation.

To listen to Haygood’s lecture, visit

To prompt questions and classroom discussion, OCLRE created activities to help students learn about Justice Marshall, the federal

appointment of judges, and checks and balances of the three branches of government. Take students back to the 1950s and discuss the nomination and contentious confirmation of Thurgood Marshall in the context of the civil rights era. As an extension, with the presidential election fast approaching, teachers can use these activities to have students examine the constitutional role the president plays in appointing federal judges. Teachers can then ask students to look forward and predict how the next president and Senate will interact with regard to future Supreme Court nominations. Access the activities here.

Columbus, Ohio native Wil Haygood is a nationally acclaimed author and journalist. One of his previous books, The Butler:A Witness to History, was the basis of the 2013 movie The Butler. Mr. Haygood is currently the Wiepking Visiting Distinguished Professor in the Department of Media, Journalism, and Film at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.



Reporter P.O. Box 16562 Columbus, Ohio 43216-6562 1700 Lake Shore Drive Columbus, Ohio 43204 614-485-3510 Toll

P.O. Box 16562 Columbus, Ohio 43216-6562 1700 Lake Shore Drive Columbus, Ohio 43204


Toll free 877-485-3510


Save the Date!

2016 Law & Citizenship Conference

September 18 & 19 Columbus, OH

“Democracy in Action:Teaching Students about the 2016 Election” Topics include: Civility in Elections,Teaching Founding Documents, Service Learning, Mock Trial, and much more.

For more information and updates, check

2016 Schedule of Events




– We the People High School Competition


– Middle School Mock Trial State Showcase


– Mock Trial District Competition


– Middle School Mock Trial State Showcase



– Middle School Mock Trial State Showcase


19 – Mock Trial Regional Competition


4 –Youth for Justice/Project CitizenVirtual Summit



– We the People Middle School State Showcase

10 – Mock Trial State Competition


– Moot Court Competition

11 – Mock Trial State Competition

12 – Mock Trial State Championship


18 & 19 – Law & Citizenship Conference