St Mary’s students show their court room skills in mock trials

St Mary's Mock Trial team: (back) Bella Rapley, Bree Willis, Mikaela Solomons, Chloe Shanahan, Marissa Stanley, Millie Mills, Gypsy Cox, (front) Keely Williams, Emily Smith.
St Mary's Mock Trial team: (back) Bella Rapley, Bree Willis, Mikaela Solomons, Chloe Shanahan, Marissa Stanley, Millie Mills, Gypsy Cox, (front) Keely Williams, Emily Smith.

St Mary’s Catholic School is aiming to progress in the NSW Law Society’s Mock Trial Competition when it takes on Coonabarabran in the coming days.

The Wellington school will compete on Friday or Monday in the fourth and final round, with a win likely move it into the elimination rounds.

After a win and two narrow losses in the first three rounds, teacher Stephen Murphy said a win against Coonabarabran would have the students well placed.

“The girls have been outstanding so far and I know how much they want to progress so we will be looking for a win,” he said.

St Mary’s started the competition with a loss against Coonabarabran but was able to get a win in the return match.

Two weeks ago, it produced an incredible performance to get within three points of a more experienced All Saints’ College, Bathurst team.

That trial was held at Wellington Local Court House, and was presided over by Magistrate Howard Hamilton.

While St Mary’s mock trial team is comprised of students from years 7 to 9, Bathurst’s team was all year 11 students.

To be awarded just three points less than All Saints’, who in previous years have been state finalists, is a great result.

Stephen Murphy

St Mary’s produced a flawless prosecution case and demonstrated an expert understanding of the legal proceedings, Mr Murphy said.

“They were fighting above their weight and they were magnificent. To be awarded just three points less than All Saints’, who in previous years have been state finalists, is a great result,” Mr Murphy said.

The Wellington team includes barristers Chloe Shanahan and Marissa Stanley, solicitor Millie Mills, prosecution witnesses Mikaela Solomons and Emily Smith, Magistrate’s clerk Gypsy Cox and prosecution assistants Keely Williams, Bella Rapley and Bree Willis.

“The students have really embraced the opportunity to take part in mock trials and they put in a lot of effort. They prepare for two or three afternoons a week after school, with the help of legal expert Jo Ivey,” Mr Murphy said.

“Mock trials are such an enriching activity that can provide skills that can help in so many areas of life.”

Mr Murphy wanted to thank Ms Ivey, and the student’s legal mentors Jess Kitch and Kacey-Lee Burling for their time and assistance.