Understanding Law visits courthouse

Students see justice system in action

The OHS Understanding Law class took a field trip with Mrs. Katie Kasper, the Understanding Law teacher, on April 8 that gave them a new perspective on how the court systems function.

After reviewing information regarding the differences between both civil and criminal court, as well as state and federal court, she felt like her class was adequately prepared to put their knowledge to the test.

On their one-day excursion, 23 students got the opportunity to talk with two criminal lawyers (one criminal prosecutor and one criminal defense), as well as a criminal court judge. They learned about the different levels of courts in the legal system as well as the function of each.

“This trip gave us the opportunity to view the federal court in action,” Kasper said.

In addition, the group talked with a U.S. Marshall regarding his organization, and later witnessed a convicted felon be sentenced to 34 months in prison. They also got to sit in on closing arguments between Express Scripts, a large pharmacy business, and a small pharmacy in Texas.

“It was interesting to see how well versed and knowledgeable the lawyers were,” Kasper said.  

The students saw and heard the terminology they have learned throughout the year in action, which Mrs. Kasper truly believes helps to drive home all of the points they make in class. She stated that the field trip gave the students a real-world application to what they were learning in the classroom.

“It gave me a visualization, instead of sitting in class and taking notes on how it works, I got to go see how it plays out.” Matt Miller (12) says.