LaGuardia High School’s mock trial team, coached by Carter Ledyard, made it to the fifth round of competition in the 2021 New York State High School Mock Trial Program.
Each winter, thousands of students from high schools throughout New York State participate in the Mock Trial Program, learning about law and trial practice by simulating a civil or criminal trial. Students play the roles of attorneys and witnesses and prepare for the competition by reviewing a package of witness affidavits and evidence and formulating questions that follow rules of evidence. Each school team includes a plaintiff and defense side.
Carter Ledyard attorneys volunteer as coaches for one New York City public high school each year. This was the second year Carter Ledyard worked with LaGuardia High School.
The students met with the attorneys for weekly virtual sessions to develop theories of the case, learn rules of evidence and examination techniques, develop their direct and cross-examinations and receive tips and feedback from experienced attorneys. This year’s case involved a civil dispute between a child pop star and their parents over the parents’ alleged mismanagement of the child’s earnings from their music career and explored issues of fiduciary duties and securities matters.
The school teams compete against each other in competition rounds that begin in early spring. Each team competes in two competition rounds, alternating between the plaintiff and defense sides, which are judged by practicing attorneys. The highest scoring schools in the initial rounds then compete in a single-elimination tournament until a state-wide champion is declared. The competition was entirely virtual this year but has traditionally taken place in New York courthouses. The LaGuardia HS team skillfully made it up to the fifth round of the competition but lost by two points in the fifth round.
Carter Ledyard is proud of the LaGuardia HS students’ accomplishments and looks forward to seeing them again in 2022.
Carter Ledyard’s Jacob H. Nemon led the coaching team, which also included Guy Ben-Ami, Jeffrey S. Boxer, Alison M. Dreizen, Jane Elberg, Matthew D. Dunn, Sarah H. Ganley, Pamela A. Mann, Alexander G. Malyshev and Meredith B. Spelman.