powered by Paladin & The Chicago Bar Foundation

Representing Students at School Expulsion Hearings

All public school students, whether in district-run or charter schools, are entitled to a legal hearing when facing a discipline infraction that may result in an expulsion. Pro bono attorneys are needed at these hearings to represent the interest of the student.

These students include vulnerable youth who are unfairly or harshly disciplined in schools and are predominately Black or Latino, low-income, LGBT, and/or students with disabilities. Without pro bono assistance, these young people will be excluded from education and future opportunities.

Through this volunteer opportunity, attorneys will interview and counsel their client, investigate and develop the case, and conduct a quasi-trial proceeding with an independent hearing officer.

Chicago Lawyers’ Committee implements community-based solutions that advance civil rights and secure racial equity and economic opportunity for all. Attorneys represent students at expulsion hearings, fight housing discrimination, represent pro se litigants in federal court settlements, and represent victims of hate crimes and discrimination.

Type of engagement

Litigation

Time commitment

Completion of required training, then each case takes approximately 11–25 hours over a month.

Training and support

Attorneys complete a 1-2 hour training program. Staff attorneys provide ongoing support.

  • Training is provided and required
  • CLE credit for training

Acquired skills

Oral advocacy, case management, client counseling, client/witness interviewing, case presentation, public speaking, subject matter experience

Skills and resources required

Strong oral advocacy, client communication skills are needed. Previous experience in mediations, negotiations, or administrative proceedings are also helpful.  For less experienced attorneys, expertise within your firm to provide support will also be helpful.

Location

Chicago, IL

Representing Students at School Expulsion Hearings

All public school students, whether in district-run or charter schools, are entitled to a legal hearing when facing a discipline infraction that may result in an expulsion. Pro bono attorneys are needed at these hearings to represent the interest of the student.

These students include vulnerable youth who are unfairly or harshly disciplined in schools and are predominately Black or Latino, low-income, LGBT, and/or students with disabilities. Without pro bono assistance, these young people will be excluded from education and future opportunities.

Through this volunteer opportunity, attorneys will interview and counsel their client, investigate and develop the case, and conduct a quasi-trial proceeding with an independent hearing officer.

Chicago Lawyers’ Committee implements community-based solutions that advance civil rights and secure racial equity and economic opportunity for all. Attorneys represent students at expulsion hearings, fight housing discrimination, represent pro se litigants in federal court settlements, and represent victims of hate crimes and discrimination.

Type of engagement

Litigation

Time commitment

Completion of required training, then each case takes approximately 11–25 hours over a month.

Training and support

Attorneys complete a 1-2 hour training program. Staff attorneys provide ongoing support.

  • Training is provided and required
  • CLE credit for training

Acquired skills

Oral advocacy, case management, client counseling, client/witness interviewing, case presentation, public speaking, subject matter experience

Skills and resources required

Strong oral advocacy, client communication skills are needed. Previous experience in mediations, negotiations, or administrative proceedings are also helpful.  For less experienced attorneys, expertise within your firm to provide support will also be helpful.

Location

Chicago, IL