Forty-two trainee solicitors recognised for Street Law work
Forty-two trainee solicitors were commended for their volunteer contribution at the Street Law conferral ceremony at the Law Society of Ireland.
The Law Society has been running Street Law since 2013. In this time, over 3,500 students have completed the programme. Originally developed in Georgetown University in the United States, Street Law is an initiative which places trainee solicitors studying at the Law Society in local schools to teach law in a practical way.
This year, 42 trainee solicitors visited 15 partnering DEIS (Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools) schools to deliver the Street Law programme to over 500 students.
As part of the programme, trainee solicitors attend an orientation weekend in September which prepares them to teach in the schools. The trainee solicitors learn how to deliver the programme over six lessons and cover topics such as the court systems, family law, discrimination law and sexual offences. In return, Street Law allows the students to see how the law affects their daily lives and helps promote lifelong civic engagement.
Volunteer Darragh Bollard, a trainee solicitor with Philip Lee, said: “Street Law brings law to people who might not have had any experience of law in the past. It aims to provide a positive appreciation of law, how it operates and shows how it benefits society in an active, interactive and inclusive forum.
“We developed general class outlines but the classes take the form of discussions where the students could raise different points. The students were very knowledgeable and not afraid to challenge societal concepts or the opinions of their peers.”