Attorneys for Civics Education was founded in 2013 by a group of Idaho attorneys who recognized the critical importance of civic education in Idaho’s schools. Uniting ACE members is a common vision: to increase and sustain opportunities for civic education in Idaho’s schools and ensure the Idaho youth have a solid understanding of the Constitution and the Rule of Law. Through outreach and fundraising, ACE is committed to supporting a quality civics education for Idaho’s young people. We welcome Idaho attorneys of all practice areas to join ACE in supporting the three civic education programs we champion.
Idaho Mock Trial is a statewide hands-on civic education activity for high school students. Working with attorney and teacher coaches, participants prepare a hypothetical legal case and present it in a simulated courtroom competition. In real and virtual courtrooms, before real judges and attorneys, teams try cases they have been preparing since the fall. From opening statements, through direct and cross examination of witnesses, to closing arguments, each team has its own attorneys and witnesses and must be ready to present either side of the case before juries who score their performances.
The Center for Civic Education partners with states to promote teaching and learning about the Constitution and Bill of Rights. State programs conduct local teacher professional development, hold conferences, and organize local and state simulated congressional hearings for elementary and secondary students. Each year these state programs impact thousands of teachers and tens of thousands of students.
The YMCA Youth in Government Program engages Idaho high school students in an opportunity to obtain real life experience simulating the roles of the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches of Idaho government. Participants develop skills in writing bills, parliamentary procedure, moot court competitions, lobbying, and even electing government officials. Groups compete in Regional Conventions and a State Convention held at the Idaho State Capitol Building.