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Education: Justices make right call in teaching children

Most of us think we have a good understanding of how our government — particularly at the state and local levels — works.

But quick: How many justices serve on the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals? Are magistrates required to have law degrees? Does it matter whether a candidate for a circuit court judgeship is a Democrat or Republican?

Many Mountain State residents know less about how the court system works than they think, in part because things have changed since civics class in high school. And some schools never get to the mechanics of the state’s judicial system.

Good for Supreme Court justices, then, for revamping their public education program. It is important. Knowledge is power, and constituents who understand the roles of the folks they send to Charleston are able to make better decisions — and less likely to have the wool pulled over their eyes.

A key to the Supreme Court’s program is providing judicial officers willing to go to schools and explain things to students. The court has a panel of them; we encourage educators to make use of the resource (go to the court website, courtswv.gov, and click on “student resources”).

Too many people are ignorant of how government really works. The court’s program will help — but only if it is used.

Answers, by the way, are: Five, no, and no (because judicial elections are nonpartisan).

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