Nebraska State Bar Foundation

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Students Offer Solutions for Problem of Cyberbullying

Essay Contest winners (front row L to R) Addie Curley and Holly Green, (back row) Nebraska Supreme Court Chief Justice Mike Heavican, Essay Contest winners Makala Michka and Erik Prieto, and Foundation President Kile Johnson.
In answer to the question posed for the 12th Annual Law Day Essay Contest, all winners agreed that the Nebraska Legislature should take some type of action to protect students from cyber-bullying. Most acknowledged the seriousness of cyber-bullying by referring to student suicides that have occurred as a result of the student being bullied. One writer referenced a personal experience of being cyber-bullied, while another stated that "there needs to be a way to create an environment where students feel safe to speak up about bullying." 

These are the 2011 contest winners:

Grade 8 Makala Michka Stuart Public
Grade 9 Addie Curley Marian, Omaha
Grade 10 Holly Green Northwest, Grand Island
Grade 11 Yan (Cassie) Jia Westside, Omaha
Grade 12 Erik Prieto Lyons-Decatur Northeast

5th Graders Shadow Lawyers and Judges on Law Day

The Deputy Sheriff demonstrates the fingerprinting technique at the Holt County Courthouse.
The 10th Annual Law Day Job Shadowing activities for fifth graders took place in eight courthouses across the state this year. These activities are sponsored by the Bar Foundation and the Nebraska Supreme Court for the purpose of encouraging students to work hard and stay in school. Since the program began statewide in 2003, more than 2,000 students have participated. If you would like more information about the program, please check this web page: Here you will find photos, Job Shadowing FAQs, and informational videos for teachers and students about the program.

Santee Teacher Sponsors Student Council Members in Job Shadow Activity

Judge Alan Brodbeck demonstrates courtroom technology at the Holt County Courthouse to members of the Santee Community Schools Student Council

Teacher Sherry Plumbtree and members of the Santee Community Schools Student Council traveled to O'Neill on May 6 to shadow Judge Alan Brodbeck at the Holt County Courthouse. There, the students toured the high tech courtroom Judge Brodbeck has created and saw a demonstration of the JUSTICE online system of record keeping, a video demonstration of the court reporter's work, and the ways various forms of evidence may be presented electronically. The group also admired the handiwork of Judge Brodbeck as seen in the courtroom furnishings, which he crafted by hand.

After taking a tour of the courthouse, the students and Mrs. Plumbtree visited the law office of Forrest Peetz. Mr. Peetz told them about the education he received in order to become a practicing lawyer. He also described the variety of case types a small-town lawyer undertakes to serve the legal needs of the community. The students had an opportunity to discuss educational and career opportunities in general with Mr. Peetz, Judge Brodbeck, and staff members from the Bar Foundation and Nebraska Supreme Court who traveled to O'Neill for this activity centered around Law Day.


Bar Foundation Trains 14 Additional TPAL Teachers

Ten Lincoln Public School educators, two Life Skills Educators from CEDARS Youth Services, a probation educator, and a local pastor participated in a day-long Teen Parents and the Law (TPAL) workshop in Lincoln on June 15. Dr. Deanna Vansickel-Peterson, a Licensed Mental Health Practitioner and Extension Educator with the Douglas/Sarpy Extension – Central Office in Omaha, conducted the training.

The workshop outlined the 23-chapter curriculum, created by Street Law, Inc. for the purpose of teaching parents about the law and helping them help their children to be educated and productive adults. The Foundation provided names of local attorneys who have volunteered to be resource people in the TPAL classrooms and also gave the teachers a set of recently updated Nebraska Laws that relate to the TPAL lessons.


Debate about Cyber-Bullying Headlines Law Day Celebration

Creighton School of Law Professor G. Michael Fenner and Oakland, Nebraska, attorney Clarence E. Mock will debate the issue of protection from cyber-bullying vs. protection of First Amendment rights at a special Law Day Luncheon on May 2 in Lincoln. The luncheon honors the winners of the Twelfth Annual Law Day Essay Contest, sponsored by the Nebraska State Bar Foundation and the Nebraska Supreme Court.

The Nebraska School Activities Association building, 500 Charleston Street, is the location for the Law Day event, which begins at noon and concludes by 2:00 p.m. The public is invited to attend the debate, which begins at 1:00 p.m. Luncheon attendance is by invitation only. Those interested in attending the debate should reserve space by April 25 by contacting the Bar Foundation, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


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Law-Related Education