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Students Develop Important Skills through Civil Rights Education

Street Law, Inc.

Over 40 years of educating about law, democracy, and human rights

Students Develop Important Skills through Civil Rights Education

Hon. Lee Satterfield, chief judge of the D.C. Superior Court, serves as a "Legend" for a fifth grade class at Emery Elemenary School in Washington, DC.

Street Law, Inc. has received a grant from the Norflet Progress Fund to develop civil rights education programs in New England and the Mid-Atlantic states through partnerships with KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) Schools, the National Black Law Students Association, and the National Bar Association. Through a three-tiered approach, Street Law will teach African American youths about the importance of civil rights history, its impact on their rights and responsibilities, and how they can be active, engaged members of their communities.

The program elements include the following:

  • Breakfast with a Civil Rights Legend encourages upper elementary school students to take pride in their community and recognize the impact that community leaders—or “civil rights legends”—have on justice and equality.
  • Youth Act for Change teaches middle school students about civil rights and public policy issues and the advocacy steps they can apply to create meaningful change in their communities.
  • The Civics and Civil Rights Institute for Teachers is a three-day professional development institute for high school social studies teachers to improve and enrich their teaching about law, democracy, and civil rights.

Throughout the course of the program, which began November 2011 and ends October 2014, over 3,000 upper elementary and middle school students will be directly impacted. Additionally, the high school teachers trained in the Civics and Civil Rights Institute will pass their knowledge on to approximately 5,000 students each year.

These students will benefit from the development of essential skills, such as advocacy, communication, problem-solving, and critical thinking, which will better equip them to improve their lives and overcome challenges. Students will also benefit from the exposure to positive adult role models. All three initiatives will involve community leaders—professionals, judges, lawyers, and activists—who will share their experience and expertise. 

If you are interested in learning more, please contact Deborah Foster.