Hearing Room Considerations for Teacher Reduction in Force Proceedings
- Room Standards: Select a well-ventilated, quiet, and accessible room large enough to accommodate all parties and witnesses seated comfortably.
- For the ALJ: a large table and chair situated close to the witness chair and court reporter.
- For the court reporter: table and chair without arms situated close to witness chair and the ALJ.
- For each set of attorneys: a table and three chairs facing judge.
- For self-represented respondents: a table with enough chairs for all self-represented respondents.
- For the witness: a chair near the court reporter and the ALJ; witness generally sits at one end of ALJ's table.
- For the audience: enough chairs to accommodate all named respondents.
- Convenient and sufficient parking for respondents, counsel, witnesses, ALJ and court reporter.
Considerations For The Larger Lay-Off Hearing (100+ Respondents)
- Room Size: Large enough to accommodate all parties and witnesses, seated comfortably. Large auditoriums or gymnasiums are acceptable. If necessary, have an overflow room with closed circuit television to hearing room. It is often possible to move hearing to smaller room the second day if audience size drops.
- ALJ, witnesses, counsel and reporter on an elevatedplatform if possible.
- At least two counsel tables for district and for teacher representatives with at least 6 chairs per side.
- One table for ALJ and one table for the court reporter.
- Microphones needed for all tables so audience can hear.
- When arranging tables, consider the arrangement most likely to permit the audience to hear. Some venues have judge and counsel tables facing the audience.
- Visual presentation aids such as projectors are encouraged. District representatives must provide equipment and staff to ensure visual presentation aids do not interfere with the hearing process.
- Audience: Provide sufficient chairs for all named respondents. Reserve seating for self-represented respondents in the front rows. Have one podium with microphone stationed in front of audience for self-represented respondents.
- Signage for front doors of auditorium/hearing room: QUIET, HEARING IN PROGRESS.
- Designate a nearby room for respondents to meet privately with their attorneys.
- Convenient and sufficient parking for all respondents, counsel, witnesses, ALJ and Court Reporter. Reserve a parking space for the ALJ close to the entry to the hearing room.
SECURITY AND COURT REPORTER SERVICES: School district are expected to provide for a court reporter and security. Please contact the OAH Presiding Judge at least five days before hearing if there are any concerns about court reporters or security.