Fort Hamilton HS scores win in the “courtroom”

The Fort Hamilton Mock Court team has courted success, snagging the championship win at the 2011 New York City Moot Court Competition!

The team, comprised of seven Fort Hamilton students, worked hard to make it to the final round, outlasting 47 schools including Stuyvesant, Bronx High School of Science and Midwood, stated Randy Kaminsky, the group’s coach.

The four speakers representing the team, Amy El Sayed, Ledia Duro, Viola Peno and Stelios Kakleas, went head to head with students from Brooklyn Tech in the final round. The students prepare speeches based on a court case and deliver it to the judges, explained Kaminsky. Points are given for how well the members can answer on-the-spot questions from the evaluators.

“This was the school’s first championship. I am really proud of the kids. I think they are champions no matter what. They worked hard to get to the finals. They make the school and their families proud. Of course, winning is nice,” exclaimed Kaminsky, the Moot Court advisor for about nine and half years.

“Last year, we ranked in second in the city, which had never happened in our school’s history. All of our hard work and determination had paid off, but being ‘second best’ gave us the drive and motivation to work even harder this year and reach our full potential,” noted Ledia Duro, a junior and member of the team since her freshman year.

“Our inspiring law coach, Mr. Randy Kaminsky, Assistant Principal [of social studies] Mr. Gregory Abood, and our principal, Ms. Jo Ann Chester gave us that push and ignited that passion within us to strive for greatness and never give up,” she went on. “We wouldn’t have made it as far as we did and have been victorious if it wasn’t for every speaker and researcher on the team, our amazing coach, and the wonderful individuals who supported and guided us along the way.”

The students celebrated their win with a championship breakfast held in the school’s library, where they were congratulated by Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz and Councilmember Vincent Gentile, who plans to issue a proclamation to the team.

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