Meigs County Hosts Ohio Supreme Court Session
By Jenna Gant | April 21, 2016
The Ohio Supreme Court heard arguments in Meigs County at the local high school as part of its Off-Site Court Program.
Since 1987, the Off-Site Court Program has enhanced students' understanding of the legal system by providing an opportunity for them to observe proceedings in person and to speak with justices, attorneys, and Court staff.
"The goal of the Off-Site Court Program is to teach students about the Supreme Court by giving them an opportunity to study about the court, to focus with the help of local attorneys on one of the cases to be argued, and then to have the opportunity to see the case argued in Court," Chief Justice Maureen O'Connor said during her opening statements before the first case was argued. "Bringing the Court to this high school makes this learning event convenient for students and teachers."
Students from Meigs, Eastern, and Southern high schools heard three cases during the county's first time hosting the justices.
"I really enjoyed being able to interact at first when [the justices] were able to come out and talk with us," Meigs High School senior Jason Meadows said. "It was just thrilling, and I never would have believed that they'd come to this small town, but they were here and I enjoyed it."
Students and teachers received curriculum material to study before oral arguments, including summaries of the specific cases to be argued. Local attorneys teamed up with educators at each participating school to explain Ohio's judicial system and to review case materials.
After hearing the cases, students met with the case attorneys for a debriefing and discussion of the legal issues.
Meigs High School senior Kelsie Powell said she knew a little bit about the judicial system since her dad is a juvenile and probate judge in the county, but she said watching the justices in action was educational.
"It was very interesting and definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience for me and my classmates," Powell said. "It was a very cool experience."
This was the 72nd time the Court traveled outside of Columbus to hear oral arguments.