Wolverhampton Magistrates Court
This will be our 4th visit as a school to Wolverhampton Magistrates Court, year on year we teach the pupils about the criminal justice system and real-life cases, that tie in with our curriculum.
This year we took 13 year 9 pupils to Wolverhampton Magistrates Court to experience what it would be like to enter a courtroom and first-hand witness how the court deal with offenders. We witnessed how the court can be supportive and help individuals back into the community. Some reoffenders were brought before the court and were handed harsher sentences. We listened to the magistrates as they deliberated and justified their reason for their choices. The pupils found this a useful conversation as some of them later were talking to me about the choices the magistrates made. Some pupils thought the sentences were too soft, for example a person had been banned from driving and 2 days later he was caught speeding. This conversation raised eyebrows with the boys as they thought he should have had a harsher sentence.
It was a valuable experience, and it was pleasing to hear the pupils talking about the visit and how they could relate to it, some were saying how they found it daunting and would not want to be in court. It was unfortunate to hear one pupil say he’s been here before with his dad, it made me think about our pupils and what they are exposed to. On a positive, it opened their minds about policing and the law and hopefully they can appreciate the systems we have.
We have built a positive relationship with the Wolverhampton Magistrates Court and on each visit, we have been praised for the inquisitive nature of pupils and how well they represent the school.
Last year we received information about Mock Trails. This is the opportunity to introduce our pupils to the criminal justice system through an immersive, active learning experience. We practiced with a fictitious case study to begin with. This year we’re gearing up for the real thing, in March we’re attending Wolverhampton Magistrates Court to challenge other schools.
We have dedicated pupils who have joined the team and have been rehearsing their roles in preparation for the real event.
Mr A Jeer