Students may be represented by an attorney in the school discipline process. This right was secured in the case of In re Roberts, 563 S.E.2d 37 (N.C. App. 2002). As most students do not have skill in producing and presenting evidence on their own behalf, representation by an attorney can considerably enhance their chances of having the period of suspension reduced or the penalty revoked. Even if the student has represented him or herself at the initial hearing, an attorney can be involved in various levels of appeal, again, offering the student the real chance of having the suspension reversed or reduced.
This website will provide guidance for an attorney representing a student in the disciplinary process. Because each school district has the authority to develop its own discipline procedures, the website is necessarily general. Nevertheless, it offers guidance that should be helpful in most any process. Attorneys should consult the specific district policies as soon as possible in the process. In addition, attorneys should consult the state statute governing school discipline, N.C.G.S. §t115C-390.1 et seq., and the documents linked from this page.