About Youth Court
Olathe Youth Court is an alternative to District Court for first time offenders of minor offenses such as: battery, criminal trespass, criminal damage to property, disorderly conduct, and theft. The jurisdiction of and referrals to Olathe Youth Court are within the discretion of the Johnson County Office of the District Attorney. Olathe Youth Court is voluntary, and student defendants who complete all Olathe Youth Court requirements have no formal criminal record.
Olathe students serve as judges, jurors, attorneys, clerks, bailiffs and service officers in Olathe Youth Court. The majority of cases in youth court are guilty pleas where participants determine appropriate sanctions for the defendant. However, Olathe Youth Court is one of the few youth courts in the nation that allow a not guilty plea where participants determine the guilt or innocence of the defendant.
If Interested in Participating
Interested Olathe students may participate in a Youth Court session as a juror and can attend training sessions to become a Youth Court Officer. After students have served on two juries and completed appropriate training, they are eligible to work as attorneys, judges, bailiffs, clerks, and service officers. Training sessions are held at the Student Development Department at 315 N. Lindenwood throughout the school year.
When and Where to go
Court sessions are typically held on the fourth Thursday of each month (no sessions in December or May) at 6 p.m. on the second floor of the Johnson County Courthouse, which is located at the corner of Santa Fe and Kansas Ave. in Olathe.
Directions to the Johnson County Courthouse
125 N. Cherry St. Olathe, Kansas 66061
Attend the next Youth Court session or Contact Student Development.
What the students say
“I am very grateful to be involved with Youth Court. I love it so much because of the opportunity I have to serve other people. The defendants are great kids who have just made a mistake and need support and guidance in how to turn a tough situation around into an experience that will be for their good. In many ways, Youth Court is helping me just as much as some of these kids. I am improving myself, I am learning how to come out of my shell, and I am becoming a kinder, more caring person.”
- Mallory Rush, 2007 Olathe South Graduate