CONTACT: Teresa Weidemann-Smith
State Bar of Wisconsin
(800) 444-9404, ext. 6025
Wisconsin Students Receive National Honor Two Years in a Row
MADISON, September 9, 2004 -- For
the second year in a row, Wisconsin students received a superior rating,
the highest possible, at the recent 2004 "We the People - Project
Citizen" national competition in Salt Lake City, Utah. Of the 44
states competing nationally, only 15 earned a superior rating.
In May, community leaders and State Bar of Wisconsin members judged
12 statewide portfolio submissions from 9 schools to select this year's
Wisconsin finalist. Heritage Christian Middle School in Milwaukee took
first place at the state competition for its project: "Youth and
Smoking," a proposal to eliminate smoking at or near school grounds.
"Wisconsin students have achieved the highest national category two
years in a row with the We the People - Project Citizen
program," says Michelle Behnke, State Bar of Wisconsin President. "This
is a testament to the success of the program in our state's
participating elementary and middle schools and reflects the skills and
educational abilities of our younger students in the state. Educating
our young people about their civic rights and responsibilities is
especially important to a strong democratic society."
Nearly 200 students and 10 teachers from nine Wisconsin schools
participated in the statewide competition. We the People - Project
Citizen in Wisconsin is one of a variety of law-related education
programs that promotes competent, responsible participation in state and
local government. The curricular program aims to educate students on
civic issues and teaches students how to monitor and influence public
policy. The state competition in Madison was sponsored by the State Bar
of Wisconsin, the Center for Civic Education, the National Conference of
State Legislatures and the US Department of Education. Last year,
Crestwood Elementary School in Madison also achieved a superior rating
for their portfolio, "Recess: Perishing Before Our Eyes," a proposal to
increase student recess time at public schools.
The State Bar of Wisconsin is the mandatory professional association,
created by the Wisconsin Supreme Court, for attorneys who hold a
Wisconsin law license. With more than 20,000 members, the State Bar aids
the courts in improving the administration of justice, provides
continuing legal education for its members to help them maintain their
expertise, and assists Wisconsin lawyers in carrying out community
service initiatives to educate the public about the legal system and the
value of lawyers.
For more information on law-related education efforts or to participate
in the Project Citizen
program, visit www.legalexplorer.com
contact Dee Runaas at (800) 444-9404, ext. 6191.