Magistrate’s visit to The Beacon

On Friday 13th May a magistrate visited The Beacon, Folkestone to talk to Year 6 and Year 11 pupils, and Zone 2 School Council members.

Magistrates visit to The Beacon

On Friday 13th May 2022, Magistrate Alvin Shaw, visited The Beacon, Folkestone.

He made a presentation to Year 6 pupils from Barbados class, Margate class and Castle Hill on making good choices, how a magistrate’s court works and what prison is like.

Magistrate Alvin then answered questions from Zone 2 Student Council members before delivering another presentation to both Year 11 classes. This went into more detail about things such as peer pressure and how making bad decisions can lead to negative consequences after conviction.

Barbados class teacher, Mr Oleksin, said: “Overall the students were wonderful. They listened attentively, asked thoughtful questions and were well-behaved throughout. Magistrate Alvin was very impressed.”

Magistrate Alvin said:
“Excellent interaction from your Year 6 and 11 pupils (and the school council members). The interest in the subject matter and questions were brilliant. I am sure they learnt a tremendous amount about the justice system in this country and the teachers will be able to refer back to the topics we covered to remind the pupils of the potential consequences of their actions during the rest of the school year.

I’d be delighted to return next year.”

Who are magistrates?

Magistrates are ordinary people who hear cases in court in their community. Three magistrates sit on the bench in criminal, youth and family courts. Magistrates must have good common sense and the ability to make fair decisions. Magistrates are volunteers, which means they don’t get paid for the work they do.

What do magistrates do?

Magistrates listen to all the evidence given in court and follow set out decision-making processes and case law to reach fair decisions. A legal adviser, who also sits in court with the magistrates, helps them with points of law.

Thank you to all the adults involved and to the young people for being so engaged.