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Year 11 & the Bar Bock Trial competition

Posted on: 01/12/2016

On a cold but bright Saturday morning last week, fifteen keen Copthall Year 11 students arrived at Blackfriars Crown Court to compete in the Bar Mock Trial competition.  The competition is run by the Citizenship Foundation.  State school students take on the roles of barristers and witnesses and present their case against teams from other schools. First; they have to become familiar with the case; then, they have to battle it out in real courtrooms, in front of real judges. Their performances are judged by Circuit Judges, Recorders (Sheriffs in Scotland) and senior barristers or advocates. 

We were involved in three rounds throughout the day, each against a different school.  Each round takes the form of a court case with one school prosecuting and the other defending.  All roles (apart from the judge) are taken on by students so our team consisted of barristers, witnesses, a Court Clerk, an Usher as well as jurors.

The students were extremely professional in their approach and some could have easily been mistaken for trainee advocates.  While we did not get through to the national final the students enjoyed the experience.  It will have boosted their confidence of public speaking enormously.  It was also, as Talbia commented, ‘actually really fun’!

The team: Oluwateleayo Adeyinka (witness), Evalina Vertelkaite (witness), Stephanie Mirekua (Defendant), Architha Arulvaratharajah (Barrister), Laila Deen (Witness), Valentina Pini (Barrister), Awa Jagne (Witness), Mana Ibrahim (witness), Joy Emmanuel (Barrister), Julia Graszkiewicz (Barrister), Nadia Shahrir (Usher and Witness), Fiona Lahu (Barrister), Fatima Mughal (Barrister), Talbia Nasir (Court Clerk), Aisha Sheikh (Juror).

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