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Law and Public Service Magnet Program

How did different types of government begin? How does the court system work here in the United States? Both questions are just a portion of the course of study for students in the Law and Public Service Magnet Program.

The Law and Public Service Magnet Program is located at Colts Neck High School. It is a rigorous program geared toward highly motivated students with demonstrated interests in history, politics, government, law, volunteerism, and leadership. Students enrolled in the program enhance their problem-solving, critical thinking, reading, and writing, oral communication, research, and organization skills. The values of citizenship, justice, and service serve as the foundation for academic study. Students study history as it relates to the development of the United States and the evolution of world societies and governments. They also explore political thought, ethical philosophy, and leadership theory. Skills and knowledge are enhanced by active service learning experiences, volunteerism and public service on the school, local, state and national levels.

Students in Law and Public Service have guest speakers visit throughout the school year. Previous speakers include Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni, the Honorable Judge Angela Dalton of the Monmouth County Superior Court, Assistant Prosecutor Tom Fichter of the Monmouth County Special Victims Bureau, Monmouth County Clerk Christine Giordano Hanlon, former Monmouth County Freeholder and now state Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso, state Senator Vin Gopal and members/candidates for federal government. The speakers expand upon the students’ curriculum by offering real-life perspectives.

During their senior year, students explore career opportunities through externships in government offices and law-related institutions such as Monmouth County Offices, the Monmouth County Freeholders Office, Monmouth County Superior Court, the Monmouth County Democratic Party Headquarters, the Monmouth County Republican Party Headquarters, and various law firms. Enhancing their coursework the Law and Public Service program has hosted several successful young voter registration drives which were organized entirely by the students.

Many students enrolled in the program are a part of the award-winning Mock Trial Team. In January 2019, the group won the Vincent Apruzzese Monmouth County Mock Trial Competition. The competition is conducted exactly like a trial would be complete with the prosecution, defense, a judge, and a jury. For any student considering pursuing a career in law, the competition provides an understanding of what their future might look like.

Past and current students of the program have received the Sons of the American Revolution New Jersey Joseph S. Rumbaugh Historical Oration Award, a Global Citizen Scholarship Award, and served as a delegate at the United Nations Youth Assembly.

Anyone with an interest in government or the judicial system as a future career will find the Law and Public Service Magnet Program provides both real-world experiences and in-depth classroom instruction to set them ahead of the curve in their post-secondary pursuits.