Prosecutors In High Schools
(Fort Worth, TX) – Some students are about to learn about the criminal justice system firsthand.
A new partnership between the Fort Worth Independent School District and the Tarrant County Criminal District
Attorney will virtually bring prosecutors into classrooms for more than 700 students taking government classes this year.
It’s called “Prosecutors in High Schools” and it’s designed to build trust between students and criminal justice partners, who will teach about topics ranging from First Amendment Rights to Digital Forensics.
“We always have had speakers going to schools to talk to students. When asked, we go,” said Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney Sharen Wilson. “Then we learned something when we had to go virtual in the court system this year because of COVID-19.
“We realized if we could do these classes virtually, rather than in person, we would reach hundreds of students at a time instead of just those in one classroom,” she said. “That’s the goal – teaching as many students as possible.”
The goal of this program is to build trust between students and criminal justice partners through education about the criminal justice process, knowledge of career opportunities, and exchange of information about the impact of criminal justice actions.
Starting Oct. 27, prosecutors, investigators and staff from the CDA’s Office will provide four virtual webinars for students each semester. They are:
• What are your First Amendment Rights?
• Arrest, Search and Seizure
• Introduction to a Jury Trial
• Evidence, Investigations, Digital Forensics and Technical Services and Trial Art
These virtual classes will be woven into the government class curriculum, highlighting these topics and explaining how the criminal justice system works.
So far, 758 students are scheduled to participate in these classes from Dunbar, Polytechnic, Diamond Hill-Jarvis, O.D. Wyatt, Eastern Hills and Western Hills high schools.
“We are very pleased to announce and celebrate this new partnership,” said Fort Worth ISD Superintendent Kent P. Scribner. “Many of our seniors who are enrolled in Government classes will interact with professionals in the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office in a way most people never do.
“It is exciting to have our local industry practitioners coming to our classrooms and showing students how what they are learning in class is used daily in our community.”