If you are facing teacher misconduct disciplinary procedures, attorney K. Brandon Remington of Remington & Dixon, PLLC in Charlotte can represent you. He is an experienced teaching license defense attorney who understands the disciplinary process. Get professional help to protect your license.
Discipline and Licensing Action Against a Teacher
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction licenses teachers in the state. In addition to granting licenses, they have the authority to suspend or revoke a license.
As a teacher, there are two kinds of disciplinary actions you may face. There is your teaching license itself. It is your authority to teach in any public school. There is also dismissal or demotion as a career employee of a local school under G.S. § 115C-325(e)(1).
Conduct that May Result in Licensing Action for a Teacher
Per 16 NCAC 06C.0372, the State Board of Education has nine grounds for license suspension or revocation:
- Fraud, misrepresentation, or concealment when applying for a license
- Ineligibility based on changes or corrections in license documentation
- Criminal conviction that evidences an inability to teach effectively
- Dismissal by a local school for immorality if it evidences an inability to teach effectively
- Dismissal by a local school for physical or mental incapacity
- Resignation from employment without a 30-day notice unless excused
- License revocation in another state
- Illegal, unethical, or lascivious conduct if it evidences an inability to teach effectively
- Failure of a school administrator to report revocable conduct
When deciding what licensing action to take, the Board considers the severity of the offense and its impact on the school community. They consider whether the teacher can continue to perform their duties. The teacher’s degree of fault, their remorse, rehabilitation, and likelihood of recidivism are also factors.
Actions that have been grounds for disciplinary action by the Board of Education are:
- Drug use, controlled substance violations
- Fraudulent reference in a reciprocity application
- Assault of a student
- Sex acts involving students
- Sexual offenses not involving students
- Giving alcohol to students
- Larceny, misuse of funds, breaking and entering
- Falsification of licensure documents
- Wire/mail fraud
If you have criminal charges pending, attorney K. Brandon Remington can assist you in defending against those charges as well as with responding to misconduct disciplinary proceedings.
What to Expect in the Teacher Discipline Investigation Process
Anyone can report information to the Superintendent of Public Instruction that may result in a conduct investigation. The Superintendent will consider whether the report is credible. If the Superintendent chooses to investigate, they prepare written charges.
You will receive a copy of the written charges by certified mail. You have 60 days to respond.
You have the right to a hearing and to contest the charges against you. You may choose to have an attorney represent you.
The hearing process follows G.S. 150B, Article 3, Administrative Hearings. You have the right to a formal hearing before an administrative law judge. Rules for admitting evidence are somewhat formal but may be relaxed as compared to evidentiary rules in the trial division of the General Court of Justice. You have the right to request subpoenas and engage in discovery.
The administrative law judge presides over the proceedings. They may rule on preliminary matters, regulate the time for filing briefs, and punish contempt of court. They may order the assessment of attorney fees, and court costs against a state agency with a finding that the agency has acted arbitrarily or capriciously.
The burden of proof is a preponderance of the evidence. The administrative law judge makes findings of fact and conclusions of law following the hearing. They issue a final decision. You have the right to appeal the administrative law judge’s decision. (§ 150B-43).
Can You Have an Attorney Defend You Throughout a Teacher Disciplinary Proceeding?
If you are a teacher suspected of misconduct or facing disciplinary action, how you respond can impact the rest of your career. You have the right to legal representation.
Attorney K. Brandon Remington is a teaching license defense attorney. He knows how important your career is to you. He can defend you by conducting a thorough investigation, knowing what steps to take, and fighting for you at a hearing if necessary.
Representation for career employees facing discipline
If you are a career employee facing discipline or termination by a local school board, you have important rights under G.S. § 115C-325. Career employees may not be dismissed, demoted, or reduced to part time without grounds. These grounds are specific, and they are stated in G.S. § 115C-325(e).
The board must follow procedures that require notice, an explanation of the basis for the charges, and an opportunity to respond. You have only a short window of time to request a review (14 days), and you may request to have the grounds reviewed by an impartial hearing officer.
Attorney K. Brandon Remington can assist you with your response and defense.
Contact Us If You’re a Teacher Facing Discipline
To talk to a lawyer about the disciplinary procedures for teacher misconduct in North Carolina.
We invite you to contact attorney K. Brandon Remington at Remington & Dixon, PLLC. Learn about the process and get advice that is specific to your case. Contact us in Charlotte now for your consultation.
Brandon double-majored in Political Science and Criminal Justice at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. He earned his Juris Doctor from Barry University School of Law in Orlando, Florida. Throughout his career, Brandon has received numerous awards and recognition from his peers and agencies that rate attorneys. A few of these awards are from The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Trial Lawyer in 2014, The National Trial Lawyers: Top 40 Under 40 in 2014, Nation’s Top One Percent: National Association of Distinguished Counsel in 2015, Super Lawyers: Rising Stars in 2018 and 2019, and North Carolina Business Magazine: Legal Elite in 2019, among others.