The Judicial Learning Center will be completed in two (2) phases:
January, 2015 - January, 2016
Phase 1: Demolition, construction of new walls, new entry doors, carpeting, electrical and furnishings to create the Judicial Learning Center space within the current State Law Library. Preliminary exhibit content development.
February, 2016 - December, 2016
Phase 2: Project management, exhibit design, production and fabrication: Rule of Law Theater, Judicial Milestones, iCivics stations, Wyoming Map, Access to Justice, You Be The Judge, What it Takes to Be a Judge, Hear from a Judge, Assembling the Rule of Law and other wall exhibits.
The Wyoming Supreme Court launched a project to create the Judicial Learning Center within the current State Law Library. The center includes interactive exhibits to teach audiences about the importance and meaning of the Rule of Law. Exhibits highlight Wyoming’s unique and significant contributions to our country’s legal system. Understanding the law can be difficult. The center provides a fun and interactive environment to promote education about important legal concepts.
The Judicial Learning Center was inspired by the Colorado Judicial Learning Center. Wyoming’s Judicial Learning Center is located on the first floor of the Supreme Court building in Cheyenne, Wyoming, in the northeast corner of the existing Wyoming State Law Library. The center includes the following exhibits:
Because….“Democracy requires educated and involved citizens who understand the fundamental structure of our government. Without that, public trust and confidence are at risk….” Chief Justice Marilyn S. Kite, State of the Wyoming Judiciary (2012)
National surveys show that two-thirds of our citizens cannot identify the three branches of government, let alone describe their respective responsibilities, and a third cannot name any. Fewer than one-third of eighth graders could identify the historical purpose of the Declaration of Independence. Only 15% of adults correctly named John Roberts as United States Chief Justice, but almost twice as many (27%) could identify the judges on the television show, American Idol.
The Wyoming Supreme Court plays a role in promoting civics education. The Court has supported and will continue to support educational opportunities for Wyoming’s citizens, including: (1) Supreme Court sessions held in local high schools; (2) “We the People” - National Civic Education Program; (3) iCivics and Civics Education Conferences; and (4) Tours of the Supreme Court. The Judicial Learning Center will further advance civics education in Wyoming!
iCivics is a web-based project designed to promote civic education and inspire students to be active participants in our democracy. Promoted by retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, iCivics offers an array of free interactive games for students and materials for teachers. Project Citizen is a curricular program promoting competent and responsible participation with government at all levels. The program helps participants learn how to monitor and influence public policy while developing support for democratic values and principles, tolerance, and feelings of political efficacy.