Connecticut Court Visitation Program

The 2012-2013 Connecticut Court Visitation Program will be conducted from October 15, 2012 until June 5, 2013. The Connecticut Bar Association (CBA) organizes court tours in GA (Geographical Area) courts for middle and high school students statewide.

“Since its inception in 1980, the Connecticut Court Visitation Program has become a standard part of the curriculum in many schools in the state and more than 84,000 students from public and private middle schools and high schools throughout the state have participated in the program.” Superior Court Judge Seymour L. Hendel, chair of the court Visitation Program Committee stated.

An attorney, who is a member of the Connecticut Bar Association, will guide your class through the tour, explaining court procedures and introducing court personnel. Students may observe the lock-up, explore the law library and/or sit in a courtroom to observe an arraignment session, civil or criminal trial or other court proceedings. The tour is then followed up with a question and answer session. Additionally, an attorney is available to speak to your class before you visit the courthouse to instruct the students on what they will witness.

Consider bringing your class to a superior court near you through the Court Visitation Program. Registration for the program is necessary in order to make arrangements for the visit of an attorney to a school and to make arrangements with the court. When registering please provide the CBA with information about the school, your class, dates if you would like an attorney to visit your classroom and dates when you would like to visit the court. To register please contact Melissa Wyckoff at (860)612-2036 or mwyckoff@ctbar.org.

The Connecticut Bar Association will provide each teacher with a Connecticut Court Visitation Program Manual. The manual contains helpful exercises, including true and false questions, with answers to help the students learn the law and court procedures. The manual also explains state and federal court systems with some basic legal vocabulary and procedures to prepare the students for their visit.

Additionally, the Connecticut Bar Association has prepared a guidebook titled Notes on Sentencing. This guidebook is a compilation of criminal state statutes with maximum and minimum punishments. This guidebook will also be provided to teachers after registration for the Court Visitation Program with the CBA.

The Connecticut Court Visitation Program is co-sponsored by the Connecticut Bar Association, Connecticut Judges Association, and the Connecticut Judicial Branch.