Virtual Supreme Court Competition

High School students are invited to participate in an inaugural Virtual Supreme Court Competition. 

During the October 2012 Supreme Court term, The Harlan Institute and The Constitutional Sources Project (ConSource) will host their inaugural Virtual Supreme Court Competition. By participating in this competition, high school students will gain experience in researching contemporary constitutional issues, crafting persuasive appellate briefs on their classroom blogs, and presenting convincing oral arguments to legal experts in our virtual courtroom over Google+ Video Hangouts.

The Virtual Supreme Court Competition will take place in two stages: submission of an appellate brief and presentation of oral argument. First, teams of two high school students will file an appellate brief in the form of a blog post advocating for or against the University of Texas’s race-based affirmative action program, the issue pending before the Supreme Court this term in Fisher v. University of Texas.

Specifically, students will answer the fundamental constitutional question, “Is the Fourteenth Amendment Color-Blind?”. For more information on the issue, interested educators and students can visit:

Constitutional law experts at the Harlan Institute and ConSource will review completed briefs, which must be submitted by January 31, 2013, and select the top four briefs for each side.

Second, those eight teams will advance to the oral argument phase of the competition, beginning in February 2013. Teams will compete against each other, and answer questions from Harlan Institute and ConSource judges, over Google+ video Hangouts. This phase of the competition will include three rounds of oral argument. Top appellate attorneys in Washington, D.C., will judge the final round of the competition.

The grand prize for the top two high school students is an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C., to attend ConSource’s Constitution Day Celebration on September 17, 2013. Other prizes include an iPad and Amazon gift cards. Additional information about the competition and prizes is available at:

Students and educators interested in participating in the Virtual Supreme Court Competition should sign up for FantasySCOTUS, the Harlan Institute’s Supreme Court Fantasy League at

For questions or further information, please contact Josh Blackman, President of The Harlan Institute, or Julie Silverbrook, Executive Director of ConSource,

Thanks to Joey Wiseman

Civic ed project


Welcome to the nation’s largest civic education project

Student voice is an essential part of a vital and vibrant society. That’s why the My Voice™ National Student Mock Election aspires to create more paths for young people to express their views and participate in the democratic process. Join this historic initiative because It’s Your Democracy.

WV Sustainable Schools

2012-2013 WV Sustainable Schools (WVSS) Program

The WVDE announces the 2012-2013 WV Sustainable Schools (WVSS) program. In its second year, WVSS will again recognize schools that exemplify a commitment to sustainable practices in the facilities, as well as integrate those practices into the curriculum and community. The application to become a WV Sustainable School will be available at in October. WVSS has been developed under the framework of the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools program (

 To be nominated as a U.S. Green Ribbon School, WV schools must first apply to the WV Sustainable Schools program. All public and private schools are invited to submit a letter of intent to apply by October 19, 2012. The deadline for submitting a letter of intent has been extended to October 26. For more information about the state and federal programs, or to access the intent to apply form, please visit or email

Thanks to Joey Wiseman, WVDE

WV Law Adventure

Attached below you will find the rules for the WV Law Adventure, The Middle and High School mock trial program of the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia.  All students in grades 5-12 are encouraged to participate in the writing competition during the 2012-2013 school year.

Unlike other programs in which students act out mock trial scripts written by adults, students participating in WV Law Adventure must write and original mock trial script based on one of the scenarios in the official rules packet. 

Middle School 2012-2013

High School 2012-2013

YouTube Updates

YouTube Updates

1) All teachers in WV have full and instant access to YouTube.
2) All students in WV have access to the YouTube library.  This has moved OUTSIDE of WebTop and can now be accessed directly.
3) Certain computers with Netsweeper installed were not able to access YouTube.  This glitch has been solved.  
A few favorite videos
  1. How Creativity is affected by time
  2. Felix Baumgartner’s Jump
  3. The Most Matematical Flag
  4. How inventions Change History (for better and for worse)
From Mark Moore,WVDE

Honors 7th

Click the links below to download the files for Honors 7th Grade Social Studies




7-Teach21 Instructional Guide – Government Systems and Conflict Resolution Subject – SS Grade – 7

7-Teach21 Instructional Guide – Geography: Connections Between World Regions and Cultures Subject – SS Grade – 7

7-Teach21 Instructional Guide – Economics: Relationship of Geography on Supply and Demand and Prices Subject – SS Grade – 7

7-Teach21 Instructional Guide – Causes and Effects of Migration Subject – SS Grade – 7

Living History At Shepherd Univ

Anyone else who is interested in West Virginia and Civil War-era history — are enthusiastically invited to attend a free “Living History” drama at Shepherd University, titled “A New Home for Liberty,” on Saturday and Sunday, October 20 and 21, 2012.  

The entertaining and inspiring evening and afternoon programs are family-friendly; and, as noted, admission is entirely free.  You can get more information, and reserve tickets (recommended), at — or call 304-345-7663.  

The program’s sponsor is  the J.R. Clifford Project, whose civil rights educational materials are used in many West Virginia schools.

Mock Election Reminder!


If you have not registered to participate in the 2012 Mock Election it is not too late.

Welcome to the nation’s largest civic education project: The My Voice National Student Mock Election

Engaging young people and encouraging their aspirations is key to a vital and vibrant society. And now, more than ever, listening to students is important because there are so many ways for young people to express their views, in real time and via multiple media. That’s why in 2012, the Pearson Foundation is combining two great initiatives to involve students: My Voice and the National Student Mock Election. All U.S. students, parents and teachers – in both school and home classrooms – are invited to join.

Joey Wiseman, WVDE social studies coordinator