May 19, 2011
On April 13, 2011, Janet Emond—a law teacher at Downers Grove North High School (Downers Grove, IL)—was presented with Street Law's 2011 Educator of the Year Award. The award is sponsored by McGraw-Hill Education.
Janet uses the Street Law textbook as the foundation of a law elective for juniors and seniors, called Law in American Society, that challenges students to learn about the different aspects of the legal world and has inspired many of them to pursue law-related careers.
Janet is popular among students and fellow educators for creating a participatory classroom environment full of mock legal proceedings, group projects, and field trips. She has established relationships between her school and local legal professionals who enhance each unit of study by serving as resource people—guest speakers who offer their expert knowledge on legal topics. Janet brings legal issues to life for her students by incorporating visiting FBI agents, ATF agents, defense attorneys, family law attorneys, forensic psychiatrists, juvenile gang detectives, crime scene investigators, an Illinois first family detail police officer, and the dean of the school into her lesson plans.
Janet's law course provides unique hands on experiences for many of her students. Each year they visit the county jail and the county courthouse, where they observe a criminal, civil, and domestic case. Select students participate in the Illinois Youth Summit each year and learn to identify, discuss, and debate public policy issues affecting their community.
Janet attended Street Law's Supreme Court Summer Institute for Teachers in 2004. She has attended numerous other professional development training events, often training her colleagues and peers in teaching methods and the implementation of technology tools in the classroom.
View other 2011 Street Law Awards Dinner video clips:
(Reproduced with permission)
Supreme Court Summer Institute for Teachers
Topic: Democracy/Human Rights
Topic: U.S. Supreme Court