“Play-By-The Rules” Program Expands to High Schools

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Guam – Play By the Rules program creators Ponya Parks and DeWayne Pope arrive in Guam this weekend to conduct a site visit to local schools to monitor the national program. While on island, the Judiciary of Guam in partnership with Guam Department of Education will host a training workshop Tuesday, September 14, 2010 to expand the highly praised, popular program with students into the high schools.

Participants will include public and private school teachers, counselors, juvenile justice and youth service providers such as DYA, I Famagu΄on-ta, Inafa
Maolek, Island Girl Power, Sanctuary, and Girl Scouts.

National Director Ponya Parks expressed her excitement to see PBR in action again on Guam. She touted the Judiciary and GDOE “have successfully immersed thousands of middle school students and other youth into Guam law and civics. Guam could easily serve as a model for other U.S. jurisdictions.”

The national PBR site visit will include classroom visits, meetings with the Guam PBR team to plan a parent involvement event and program expansion into high schools, and PBR training. The official bird of Guam, the Ko’ko or Guam rail, will be used in caricature format to engage local youth in learning about law.

Chief Justice Robert Torres stated, “we are pleased the program has been so well-liked by our students. In fact, teachers tell me their students actually ask them if it’s a Play By the Rules lesson day and look forward to the interactive lessons.” He added, “PBR is a terrific example of how we can successfully teach our students about the law in an enjoyable manner.”

Play By the Rules is an innovative national education program that teaches youth about laws through a curriculum of best practices proven to prevent youth crime. The program is currently being taught in most 7th grade classrooms across the island, I Famagu΄on-ta, the National Guard’s Counter drug Task Force’s Camp Freedom summer program, and the Judiciary’s probation and client services programs.

Guam is one of four jurisdictions in the U.S. awarded funds to take part in Play by the Rules™ (PBR), an award-winning crime-prevention model for teaching state-specific law to primarily seventh-grade students.

The Judiciary of Guam was awarded over $200,000 in 2008 by the national project to implement the program and other funding is provided via Guam Department of Education’s Title V-A Consolidated Grants and ARRA Safe and Drug Free Schools Grant.

For more information the Judiciary of Guam, visit www.guamcourts.org, or for more information on the PBR Guam project, contact Joleen F. Respicio, PBR Guam Coordinator and chamber administrator for Chief Justice Torres, at 671.475.3300 or 671.482.7679. Additional details on Play by the Rules are available at www.pbronline.org