On Saturday 21st March Mr McCormack once again took a team of some very talented Year 8 and 9 students to the Magistrates Mock Trial competition at Coventry Magistrates Courts. The students have prepared for months for this competition and spent many hours honing their speeches and arguments so I was quietly confident that we would do well.
Due to budget cuts the Northampton heat of this competition no longer takes place which means that we have to travel further to take part in the Coventry heat. This means that we are often up against grammar school teams of very high quality which makes it a tough competition to win and yet we always compete extremely well.
In fact, this year we performed absolutely superbly and were extremely unlucky not to progress further in the competition. We faced two different schools in two court cases; in one we were the defence team and in the other we were the prosecution. In both cases we outperformed the other schools and won our cases. In the second case in particular, we witnessed our lead prosecution lawyer ruthlessly cross-examine her opponent in such a confident and determined manner that I ended up feeling sorry for the girl from the opposing school who had no answers in the face of such a polished performance.
Unlike last year, where I wasn’t sure that we had done enough to win at least one of our cases, this year I was quietly confident that we had and sure enough, at the end of the competition it was announced that we had won both of them. Even more impressively, it was announced that our lead prosecution lawyer had been awarded an individual prize for being the best prosecution lawyer on the day. What summed up it all up for me this year was seeing how delighted the rest of the team were that Miss Johnson had won the award. This demonstrated the amazing team spirit that they had fostered amongst themselves and made me feel extremely proud of our students.
It was next announced that only three schools had won both of their cases so we now knew we were in the top three. If schools tie on the number of cases won then it goes down to how many points are awarded by each judge. Unfortunately, we were not awarded enough points and had to settle for third place, losing to Rugby High School and King Edward VI Boys’ school. Therefore we bowed out of this year’s competition, disappointed but also immensely proud of our achievements.
Although we did not go through the students can be extremely pleased with their performance and their achievements this year. All of the students worked tirelessly for this competition and as far as I am concerned, they have shown courage and ability in spades. Skills they have developed during this competition will stand them in good stead in later years and hopefully along the way they enjoyed themselves and made a few new friends as well. I would particularly like to thank them all for their dedication and commitment to the competition and would also like to thank my Year 12 volunteers, who helped out every week, and in particular Miss Clarke, who really helped prepare the team and kept us on track.
Thanks to all from Mr McCormack