Constitution & Citizenship Day

History and Background

On September 17, 1787 the U.S. Constitution was signed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania by thirty-nine delegates to the Constitutional Convention. Copies of the document were distributed to the original 13 states for ratification.

In 2004, Senator Robert Byrd successfully added an amendment to the federal spending bill mandating that educational institutions receiving federal funds offer some sort of educational programming on September 17th each year.  The Indiana Supreme Court began offering Constitution Day programming in 2005 with a wide variety of activities inside courtrooms and classrooms around the state.

This year, judges are encouraged to visit a middle or high school classroom to celebrate Constitution Day with a discussion about the bail system. The April 2017 edition of the ABA Journal includes an article about bail.  Brave New Films recently released the first short film in the campaign, Breaking Down Bail.  The video combines information about the bail system with man-on-the-street interviews. It highlights the misconceptions people have about the bail system. Also, the National Center for State Courts has an online resource center, and there are additional Constitution Day resources online.
 
Judges are also encouraged to share pictures with the Office of Communication, Education, and Outreach by sending them directly to Sarah Kidwell at sarah.kidwell@courts.in.gov or by tweeting them using the hashtag #INcourtsConstitutionDay.

If you have any questions about Constitution Day, please contact Sarah Kidwell at sarah.kidwell@courts.in.gov.

 

Resources