The Justice Center has spearheaded Texas Law’s role in a pre-law undergraduate program for students at the University of Texas at Austin and Huston-Tillotson University. The program’s primary goal is to increase the number of undergraduate students of color, as well as other students who are typically underrepresented in the study of law, who enroll in law school.
The Educational Equity Project addressed educational barriers for low-income and minority students. It included the Texas Law Youth Court; the Mithoff Pro Bono Program’s Expunction Project, a clinic model that engages volunteer law students and lawyers to help individuals expunge their criminal records; and representation of individual students in school disciplinary, misdemeanor ticketing and truancy hearings.
Youth Court is an alternative discipline program designed to challenge the school-to-prison-pipeline, a national trend whereby children are funneled out of schools and into the juvenile justice system. Law students involved in Youth Court work in local middle schools to train and supervise students to hold peer-run trials and also serve as mentors to at-risk students, engaging them in a positive disciplinary program.
A guide for parents involved with Texas Child Protective Services co-authored by Justice Center, in partnership with the Texas Supreme Court Children’s Commission and practitioners from around the state.
The Justice Center and the Texas Law Children’s Rights Clinic helped develop a multi-stakeholder pilot education reform project focused on youth entering the child welfare system in Travis County. The Education Advocacy Pilot Project was an initiative of the Travis County Model Court for Children and Families for the 2012–2013 school year.