COURT

During the month of September, Teen Court representatives will be speaking at high schools throughout Sumner County to recruit new members.  The deadline for the applications is Sept. 30. 

Any student interested in Teen Court must either live in Sumner County or attend a Sumner County High School. Students must be in 9-12 grades and may not have any prior delinquent record or be under a valid court order from Juvenile Court.  

Permission is required by a parent or guardian to join the program. Students do not have to meet certain GPA requirements; we do encourage students to excel in academics.  These students must complete an average of 12 hours of intense training provided by local attorneys and other volunteers. 

They will be trained on the roles of the courtroom (defense attorneys, prosecuting attorneys, bailiff and jurors).  They will get to select which role they would like to serve in.  They only have to attend and complete training one time.  

When they complete training the members will be sworn in under the oath of confidentiality.  All Teen Court cases are confidential and closed courtroom.  Once they are in the program they are a member until the summer after they graduate. 

Once training is completed they will serve on Teen Court once a month or every other month depending on the role they select.  

The Teen Court program provides juveniles, who are first time offenders, an opportunity to face a jury of their peers. The juvenile will have a separate hearing held where their peers fulfill the roles of the courtroom (three defense attorneys, three prosecuting attorneys, bailiff and up to 12 jurors.)  The jury will then make the appropriate sanctions for the crime.  

The Juvenile Court Judge and Magistrate will determine who will be granted this opportunity.  The cases that Teen Court can process are set by statute.  Teen Court’s purpose is to intervene early in delinquent or unruly behavior while providing an educational forum for first time offenders in the community.  

If you would like more information regarding this program or for a representative to speak at your school, please contact Tammy Kellogg, Director of Teen Court for Sumner County Juvenile Court at 451-6035, or  HYPERLINK "mailto:tkellogg@sumnercountytn.gov" tkellogg@sumnercountytn.gov    

The teens involved in the program will gain firsthand knowledge of how the courtroom operates and be involved in real cases.  They will work with attorneys who have years of experience.  This looks great on college applications.  

The Tennessee Teen Court Program Inc. is a non-profit board who provides scholarships for Teen Court seniors.  The seniors must be an active member, a graduating senior and apply.  Since 2003 the board has awarded $93,000 in the Mary Ann Williams Scholarship.  The board will determine how many scholarships and the amount.  The board will select an application to receive the scholarship. 

Recommended for you