Happy Court in Greenville teaches Stone Academy students about different types of court

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GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – The Greenville County Court House hosted ‘Happy Court’ on Friday, December 6 for 80 Stone Academy first grade students.

This court is an effort to help students learn about the different types of court, as well as, show off what a real courtroom actually looks like.

First Grader, Allison Machera, said she was impressed by how clean the room was. Machera’s classmate, Sidney Park, added that it was shocking to learn there were different types of lawyers.

Happy Court featured a judge trial, with a guilty plea, and the adoption of 17 month old Caroline Sellers to her parents Michael and Tricia Sellers.

(L-R) Michael Sellers, Tricia Sellers, Caroline Sellers

“Today is just the big day that we get to celebrate that and having them here is just the icing on the cake,” Tricia said.

With each adoption, the court gives a stuffed animal, as a keepsake for the child.

Caroline received the gigantic pink pony, from the South Carolina Young Lawyers Division’s 200 stuffed animal collection last November. Her mother, Tricia, said they’ll make sure she always has the adorable reminder.

The Sellers agreed to let their adoption be part of ‘Happy Court’ because they wanted to help the county teach these young minds.

“We just want to show that a family can be made in this situation and we’re really happy that our family is finally being made today,” Michael said.

Machera and Park agreed their favorite part of court was the adoption.

“I thought it was really interesting to see the adoption and how it works,” Machera said.

“The adoption is like, you talk a lot, and I think that’s pretty cool what they said,” Park said.

The judge trial was the pretend case of Mr. Makin’ Trouble versus the State and Sammy the Solicitor.

The ‘incident’ happened at Stone Academy, which tickled students.

Mr. Trouble was accused of pushing Ms. I Am Cryin’, after an argument, which resulted in a broken toy, hurt feelings, and tears.

“I thought it was just funny and weird,” Machera said.

To make sure Trouble had a fair trial, he was given a defense attorney, who encouraged him to plead guilty.

Sammy the Solicitor said the state would settle for the defendant taking probation and spending three afternoons in the principal’s office, discussing the importance of always talking out problems and not hurting others or their things.

The judge carried down the state’s sentence, which made the courtroom erupt into laughter.

“It was like a good choice of a sentence,” Park said.

Between laughter, smiles, and the question answer portions, students agreed that ‘Happy Court’ was both educational and fun.

The judges said they’re open to hosting ‘Happy Court’ again because it gives students first hand experience in a courtroom. Additionally, the opportunity to learn up close, the joy of adoption.

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