In high school suspension or dismissal hearings, the school can hammer the students involved making the entire process unfair. If your child is facing disciplinary action in school, you might be wondering if they can bring an education lawyer for high school students to the hearing.
A student who must appear at a disciplinary hearing can bring an advisor with them. Often, the advisor can be a lawyer, advocate, or family member. Keep reading to know what an attorney can and cannot do in the hearing:
The Lawyer May Not be Able to Speak at the Hearing
Schools have their own discipline rules and procedures. And they may not want a lawyer to barge in. Because of this, schools generally limit lawyers who serve as advisors of students at disciplinary hearings. The advisor can only speak or confer with the student at the hearing. They won’t be able to argue the case of the student, address the hearing officer or discipline panel, or even question witnesses. The attorney can just observe the hearing, take notes, and advise the student quietly.
Schools Prefer Self-Representation for the Student Involved
In most schools, students facing disciplinary action are required to speak for themselves and express their position at the hearing. Sometimes, schools may claim their intention for a more open process or collaboration. However, the truth is that schools don’t want attorneys to be present at hearings as much as possible as these legal experts know the legal violations and rule breaches schools commit. Often, lawyers know exactly how to present a solid case and argue valid points. Because of this, schools think that attorneys will only make the disciplinary process hard for officials.
What Students Can Do
High school students can bring a lawyer with them. Also, they can prepare for their hearing with the lawyer, laying out all arguments, breaches, and questions. They can get the assistance of an attorney as they prepare documents before the hearing.
Overall, all hope isn’t lost. However, it is not fair for schools not to allow students to seek skilled representation. During disciplinary hearings, students can present a good case by themselves with an attorney sitting quietly on the side. The lawyer will make sure the student can properly present the argument they have prepared before the hearing. Also, they will ensure the school allows the client to cross-examine any evidence presented by the opposing party.