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(West Plains) – West Plains High School is among 12 schools chosen to compete in the annual Constitution Project, which will hold regional competitions during the fall 2014 semester and will culminate with championship rounds in Jefferson City later in the fall.

The Constitution Project gives students a mock crime scene to investigate, report about and eventually try in a mock trial, all under the mentorship of local professionals in the fields of crime scene investigation, journalism and trial advocacy. The project started three years ago at Houston High School by Texas County Associate Circuit Judge Doug Gaston, the competition expanded last year to include more than 70 students from eight schools in four regions participating in The Constitution Project’s inaugural year as a statewide competition.

This year’s competitors were chosen based on school district excellence, capability in teaching the three disciplines of the competition and student aptitude. In addition, to be chosen, each community was required to pledge commitments from the school, local judges, law enforcement, media and attorneys.

Winners will be named at the team and individual level for each discipline. Individual award winners will receive $1,000 scholarships from sponsoring organizations. Statewide cosponsors of the project include the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Missouri Sheriff’s Association, Missouri Police Chiefs Association, Missouri Press Association, Missouri Broadcasters Association and The Missouri Bar.

To learn more about The Constitution Project, visit www.courts.mo.gov/constitutionproject.

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