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Though things may look different this year for Youth & Government, it will not stop us from discussing new ideas, meeting new friends, and providing a platform for your voice to be heard. Our program is available to all students throughout the state of California, and during the course of this year’s statewide program 9th-12th grade delegates will have the chance to participate in different program tracks during three main sessions: Fall, Winter, and Spring. Within these tracks, you’ll have the opportunity to brainstorm new solutions to existing problems, debate legislation, create and analyze a new school, local or state budget - and even argue before the California Supreme Court. Whether you are a returning delegate - or if this is your first time in Y&G - we have the program for you! 

Within this new virtual format, we’ve made sure to preserve all the elements that make our Y&G programs special. There will be plenty of opportunities to meet and socialize with delegates from all over the state as well as the chance to apply and run for leadership positions during each of the three sessions. This includes the election of your 74th Chief Justice and Youth Governor!

Each person who registers for the Model Legislature & Court program will participate as a member of a delegation. A delegation is a group of students who meet weekly to learn about the program, participate in training activities, discuss local issues, and become friends. If you are a returning delegate and already know your delegation name when you register, please make sure to select it when prompted. Are you new to Y&G? Welcome! When registering, you'll select "Looks like my delegation isn't listed. Please add me to a delegation." Once we receive your registration information we'll email you and let you know which delegation you will be assigned to.  

Once you join the program, you can expect to commit anywhere from an hour and a half to two hours each week. One hour of that time will be spent in your weekly delegation meeting and thirty minutes to an hour each week doing prep work or research.



SPRING SESSION - All Politics Are Local

Program Dates: February 22nd - March 25th
Conference Dates: March 25th - 27th

Join us for this school year's final installment of our Model Legislature & Court program! During this amazing 5-week program, delegates will have the oppourtunity to participate in one of three exciting program areas. They can become the founder of a start-up where they will work in small groups and compete in a fast-paced environment for much-needed investors. Another option is to join our Education Program, where delegates will first learn about how K-12 public schools operate in California and then work to address inequalities to make the California Dream attainable for all - regardless of zip code. Our legal-minded delegates will have the opportunity to join the California Supreme Court,* where they'll spar over constitutional issues facing the state. All three program areas have exciting leadership opportunities that will be open to every delegate, regardless of past experience with our program. Finally, our five-week program will end with the electrifying election of our 74th Youth Governor and Youth Chief Justice!

Outside of their program area delegates will will meet weekly with their delegations to learn new skills and debate important local issues, connect with their peers at statewide conventions and hear from exciting guest speakers.

Program Area: Education 

Our education program this year will give delegates a better understanding of how education policy is decided and administered at a local level. Additionally, delegates will also walk away with confidence they need in order to advocate for higher quality education in their communities. Over the course of five weeks delegates can look forward to learning more about:

  • How school systems are administered at a local level
  • The role that states and individuals play in education
  • How to prepare for and give persuasive speeches
  • How to prepare for and give an impactful presentation

Program Area: Startup Simulator

The Startup Simulator is a chance for delegates to take their creativity to another level.  Assuming the role of entrepreneurs, teens will develop their own startup companies, tasked with improving something in their community.  Teams will work collaboratively to innovate a product or service that focuses on a social impact.  Over the course of 5 weeks delegates will be discussing:
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Inventions and innovations that have changed the world
  • For-profit companies with missions for social change

This program area is not only great for delegates who have any interest in pursuing a career in law but also any delegate hoping to expand their critical thinking and oral argument skills.

Program Area: Supreme Court 

Supreme Court members are provided a "case" and fact patterns involving interesting and challenging legal issues. Included with the cases are "precedent" case materials (real opinions written by other state and federal courts) whose analysis the delegates apply to their cases. The attorneys and justices work together to review and discuss the cases with staff attorneys, and then work separately to develop their oral arguments (for the attorneys) and questions (for the justices). Over the course of 5 weeks delegates can look forward to learning more about:

  • How to read and understand legal documents.
  • Develop and use oral advocacy skills.
  • How our state's court system works at the highest level

This program is ideal for any returning Youth & Government court delegates or delegates who are ready to step into one of our most challenging and complex program areas. Participation in this program is by application/selection only. 


- Final Election for the 74th Youth Governor & 74th Chief Justice will take place during the Spring Session



- You can find a list of each of the elected and appointed leadership positions that will take place during the Fall, Winter & Spring sessions HERE.
- To apply for an appointed leadership position, please complete and submit the - 73rd Model Legislature & Court Appointed Leadership Application.
- To apply to run for an elected leadership position, please completed and submit the - 73rd Model Legislature & Court Elected Leadership Application.
- If you are interested in running for 74th Chief Justice, please complete the - 74th Youth Chief Justice Intent to Run
- For all election rules and regulations: 73rd Model Legislature & Court - Elections Rules & Regulations 
**To be eligible to run for 74th Chief Justice you must sign up for the Winter and Spring Sessions  


73rd Model Legislature & Court - Single Session Program Price
Spring Session
Individual 5-Week Session:  $150.00
($250 Value)



Check out a detailed video explaining each of the sessions of the Model Legislature & Court program here. 


California YMCA Youth & Government is proud to be able to offer individual scholarships through this scholarship application. For additional scholarship information, please contact Mari@calymca.org. Scholarship information provided to California YMCA Youth & Government will remain confidential.


click here to register button 





Program Dates: January 11th - February 11th
Conference Dates: February 11th - 13th

Delegates will meet in communities across California to prepare for the Winter Session of our Model Legislature & Court Program: Bringing it Back to the State. Delegates will choose one of three program areas, each focusing on improving California. They can choose to serve in California’s Legislature where they’ll offer up ways to make California a better place to call home by debating new ideas with their fellow delegates as well as working to compromise and come together. If the Legislative Houses program area isn't the right fit, they can select the Financial Program where they’ll be tasked with creating innovative solutions to the state’s problems and will compete with each other to find out whose proposal the Youth State Treasurer and their board will fund. If participating in the third program area, delegates will have the chance to flex their legal skills by arguing important constitutional issues before the California Appellate Court. 

Outside of their program area, delegates will also have the opportunity to run for elected office, connect with their peers at statewide socials, hear from exciting guest speakers, and start the process of selecting who will serve as the 74th Chief Justice next year! 

Winter Session Leadership Opportunities:

The Winter session of the Model Legislature & Court program will have a number of leadership opportunities for delegates! With three elected positions and up to twenty appointed positions, the opportunities are boundless. 

 - 74th Chief Justice 
 - Speaker of the Assembly
 - Lieutenant Governor
 - Legislative Committee Chair
 - Budget Committee Chair 

 - Lead Appellant
 - Lead Respondent
 - Lead Judge 

For a full list of leadership positions and their requirements click here. 

Program Area: Legislative Houses 

Legislative Houses is the original Model Legislature & Court program area. Delegates can look forward to the exciting experience of serving as a member of the State Assembly or State Senate. Over the course of five weeks delegates can look forward to learning more about:

  • How California’s legislative process works
  • Ways to be involved in making changes from the top down
  • How to prepare for and give persuasive speeches
  • Basic skills in how to write different kinds of legislation. 

 The program is a great fit for delegates who love to speak and are excited by the prospect of working with their peers to build coalitions. 

Program Area: Financial 

The Financial Program centers around one unavoidable fact: In order for an idea to be successful, you need to know how to pay for it. Delegates in this program area will work in groups to form their own companies and come up with a way they think the private sector could benefit California residents. In the end, the companies will go head-to-head and compete against each other as they vie for funding from the California State Treasurer. Over the course of five weeks delegates can look forward to learning more about:

  • How public and private partnerships are administered by the State of California
  • The balance between the private sector and public institutions in improving people's lives
  • How to prepare for and give an impactful presentation

 Nicknamed the “Shark Tank of Youth & Government”, this program is great for any delegate who is a team player, but likes competition.

Program Area: Appellate Court 

The Appellate Court program area is where a party that lost at the trial court level can appeal their loss.  An appeal to an Appellate Court is not to re-hear or re-decide the facts of the case already determined by a judge and/or jury in the trial court, such as whether the defendant violated the law.  Rather, the Appellate Court decides “matters of law.” There’s no jury or witnesses, just the attorneys and justices. Over the course of five weeks delegates can look forward to learning more about:

  • How to read and understand legal documents
  • Developing and using oral advocacy skills
  • What legal reasoning, judicial temperament and opinion writing means in a judicial setting

This program area is not only great for delegates who have any interest in pursuing a career in law but also any delegate hoping to expand their critical thinking and oral argument skills.



FALL SESSION - Activating Your Political Voice - REGISTRATION HAS CLOSED

Session Dates: October 26th - December 3rd 
Conference Dates: December 3rd - 5th

In the Fall, we’ll start the year off by discussing some of the most pressing issues we face as a nation. Within small groups made up of delegates from California and beyond, you will work together to identify new and innovative solutions to some of our country’s oldest problems. In a fast pace and accelerated conference, you’ll compete for funding, taking the first step in creating real change in society.




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