Retired justice visits Palm Beach Lakes Community High School
RETIRED FLORIDA SUPREME COURT JUSTICE Barbara J. Pariente in late February spoke with students from the Law Academy and Justice Teaching classes at Palm Beach Lakes Community High School. Justice Pariente shared anecdotes about her career as a lawyer and jurist and answered many questions. The Palm Beach Lakes Law Academy is a four-year program that offers a wide variety of opportunities for students interested in law-related careers. Palm Beach Lakes High School is the only high school in Palm Beach County with a Law Academy program and the only school with a courtroom. Law Academy teacher Dr. Jeffrey Van Treese III, a longtime member of The Florida Bar, spearheads this program under the supervision of the school’s principal, David Alfonso. Students have the ability to participate in competitions for Mock Trial, Moot Court, “We The People” mock congressional hearings and “Project Citizen.” Students can also serve as attorneys in Youth Court, which is conducted in the school’s campus courtroom. Law Academy students can take college coursework (Business Law I and II) at Palm Beach Lakes Community College during the school day. For the past two years, Dr. Van Treese has partnered with Bruce A. Blitman, a longtime volunteer with the Justice Teaching Center For Civic Learning (at Florida Southern College in Lakeland) and a member of the Palm Beach County Bar Association’s Law Related Education Committee. The mission of these organizations is to teach civics to school age children, from elementary school through high school, with age-appropriate lessons that are interactive, educational and fun.