High school students will compete in the semifinal and final
elimination rounds of the 2012 Mock Trial Program at the end of
March. This is the 27th year of the Massachusetts Bar Association
Mock Trial competition.
This year's civil case explores the level of responsibility of
schools and teachers have in preventing and addressing
cyber-bullying among students.
"School bullying has received substantial attention in the media,
and the recent anti-bullying legislation shows that people in
Massachusetts want to use the law as one way to tackle this
difficult problem," said attorney Joshua A. McGuire, chair of the
MBA's Mock Trial Committee.
The semifinal elimination round will be held March 19 with
simultaneous trials at the John Joseph Moakley U.S. Courthouse in
Boston and Worcester Superior Court. Each of the four teams in this
round will have already competed in at least five trials.
"(Teams) have seen the case from both sides, and had the
opportunity to refine their arguments and presentations," McGuire
said. "The quality of the thinking and advocacy at this level is
very high, and yet new challenges emerge in every round of the
Two finalists will advance to the state championship on March 23
in the Great Hall of Boston's Faneuil Hall. In 2011, the Pioneer
Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School of South Hadley won
the state championship and placed 31st in the national
The Mock Trial Program, first organized in 1985, places high
school teams from 16 regions across the state in a simulated
courtroom situation where they take on the roles of plaintiff
attorneys, defense attorneys and witnesses. More than 100 high
school students across the state participated in the 2012 Mock
Trial Program, which began with preliminary trials at the end of
January. Local attorneys serve as team coaches and judges in the
The Mock Trial Program is made possible by a grant from Brown
Rudnick through its Center for the Public Interest in Boston, which
has contributed $25,000 per year to the program since 1998.