Miami-Dade County Teen Court is a community service project that is in alignment with civics and constitutional law studies. Teen Court is an educational experience that provides volunteer opportunities for those students who are interested in careers associated with the judicial system.
Interested youth can volunteer and earn community service hours, while serving as a volunteer defense attorney, prosecuting attorney, juror, bailiff, or clerk of the court. It is a hands-on judiciary experience which showcases what happens in a courtroom, and also allows the student volunteer to become a positive influence in the lives of juvenile offenders.
BENEFITS OF VOLUNTEERING IN TEEN COURT
OVERVIEW OF TEEN COURT
As Miami-Dade County’s only peer-sanctioning program, Miami-Dade County Teen Court is an alternative sanctioning program for first-time misdemeanor youthful offenders who agree to allow their peers instead of the juvenile justice system determine their sentencing. Through their participation, the program helps decrease juvenile delinquency by interrupting the beginning stages of criminal behavior.
The program has provided youth, volunteers and participants, an opportunity to gain knowledge and experience in a non-traditional judicial process. First-time juvenile misdemeanor offenders (participants) are afforded a sentencing hearing conducted by youth volunteers serving as attorneys, jurors, bailiffs, and clerks.
Once the participants successfully complete program sanctions, they are given the opportunity to have their records expunged. This means that there will be no public record of the offense, thereby providing youth with a second chance.
HOW TO VOLUNTEER FOR TEEN COURT
Students interested in obtaining community service hours that can be utilized towards meeting their high school graduation requirements by volunteering in Teen Court, will need to complete the M-DCPS 6586-Community Service Project Proposal Form and obtain principal approval.
TEEN COURT YOUTH VOLUNTEER APPLICATION DIRECTIONS:
For more information, please contact Ms. Maria E. Hernandez, Instructional Supervisor, at 305-805-4600.