A major effort has been galvanized to further law-related education in the State of Florida. The name of the effort is JUSTICE TEACHING, an initiative of Florida Supreme Court Justice R. Fred Lewis. The ultimate goal of this program is to pair a legal professional with every elementary, middle, and high school in the state of Florida. Read More about the Justice Teaching Program.
Visiting the Supreme Court - Observing Oral Arguments
The Supreme Court welcomes visitors to observe oral arguments, which are held August through June and are typically scheduled during the first full week of each month. No appointment is necessary to observe an argument however, large groups and persons that need an accommodation are asked to notify the Marshal's Office at 850.488.8845. The courtroom accommodates up to 165 visitors. Visitors will pass through a screening device upon entering the building.
Arguments in most cases last approximately 40 minutes (20 minutes each side), although some cases – including death penalty cases – are given additional time for argument. For most argument sessions, four cases are scheduled with a short break (10 minutes) in between the second and third case. The Court prefers that visitors be seated in the courtroom before oral arguments begin. If visitors arrive during an oral argument, security personnel will determine the best break to escort visitors into the courtroom.
View the recent oral argument schedule (dates & times) - This includes case summary information and links to case briefs.
If you are unable to attend oral arguments, WFSU's Gavel to Gavel Program and The Florida Channel provide streaming arguments as they are being heard. WFSU also provides archived oral arguments from October 1997.
Visiting the Supreme Court - Educational Programs & Tours
The Supreme Court Educational Program offers a variety of programs and tours for teachers, home-schoolers, civic groups and more. Groups larger than 10 must be scheduled with the Public Information Office by calling 850.921.9446. The Florida Supreme Court offers:
Self-guided tours for small groups of 10 or less are available and require no reservation. The courthouse is open Monday - Friday, excluding HOLIDAYS, from 8am - 5pm.
NOTE: Tours are not conducted during oral argument week (see the Court Calendar) or during Wednesday morning court conference times.
Read more about the Supreme Court Educational Programs or contact Tricia Knox at 850-921-9446. To Schedule a tour using our ON-LINE TOUR RESERVATION FORM, click HERE.
2013 Justice Teaching Institute (JTI) - April 7th - 11th
The Application Form is available on the Florida Law Related Education Association's (FLREA) webiste.
- Application deadline is February 15, 2013 -
The Justice Teaching Institute provides innovative hands-on training to 20 to 25 secondary teachers in Florida. Sponsored and hosted by the Supreme Court of Florida.
Law Week 2013 Theme: Realizing the Dream: Equality for All
For additional material pertinent to the Law Day theme please see the Florida Law Related Education Association's web site and the American Bar Association's 2013 website for additional activities and information to assist teachers and students.
Florida High School Mock Trial Competition:
The Florida High School Mock Trial Competition is an academic competition in which a team of 8 students simulate the roles of both attorneys and witness in a fictional trial situation. Students have approximately five months to prepare themselves to fit into the roles of the prosecution and defense of the case materials provided by the Florida Law Related Education Association, Inc.
Florida High School Appellate Brief Writing & Moot Court Program: State Competition
Florida Moot Court Competition is a two-part program that offers a unique opportunity to learn about the appellate process. Students write briefs and present oral arguments before an appellate judging panel using a fictitious constitutional case. The final round is held at the Florida Supreme Court. Visit the Florida Law Related Education Association for more details.
Resources for Judges and Lawyers
This page provides a list of EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE links to web sites for judges and lawyers in developing ideas for classroom visits and other educational speaking engagements.