The Hearing
Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction Hearings


At the Hearing

Who attends?

The following people typically attend a hearing:

  • You
  • Your lawyer or advisor
  • Your witnesses
  • The other party
  • The other party’s lawyer
  • The other party’s witnesses
  • The judge
  • A court reporter (in some cases)
  • An Interpreter (if needed)

How do I participate?

Your hearing may take place in person or by phone.  The judge will decide this at the prehearing conference.  If the judge decides the hearing is in person, the judge will set the location.  If the hearing is in person, the judge may let some witnesses appear by phone.

If your hearing is by phone:

Before the hearing, you must call OAH to provide a phone number where you can be reached for the hearing.

  • If using a cell phone, make sure the battery is fully charged.
  • You need to have good, clear reception. The judge must be able to hear you.
  • Be in a quiet location.
  • Do not drive during the hearing.
  • Do not multitask. The judge will expect your full attention.

If the judge does not call you within ten minutes after the start time, call OAH at (360) 407-2700 or (800) 583-8271. 

If you do not call in for the hearing, the judge may end (dismiss) your case.

If your hearing is in person:

You should arrive at least 10 minutes before the hearing starts.  If you are arrive more than 15 minutes late, the judge may end (dismiss) your case.  

What is the hearing process?

The judge will begin the hearing with a brief explanation of the hearing process. 

Here are the highlights:

  • Opening Statements – a brief statement of what your case is about.
  • Direct Examination – each party gets to ask their witnesses questions.
  • Cross Examination – each party gets to ask questions of the other party’s witnesses.  You may only ask questions.  You may not comment on their testimony or make statements. 
  • Closing Arguments - your chance to argue your position and ask the judge to decide in your favor. 

The hearing process typically ends on the last day of the hearing.  The judge will give you additional instructions if needed.


When do I get the decision?

The judge will not make a decision at the hearing.  The judge will send the decision in a written order.  Most of the time, the decision will be mailed to you within 60 days of the hearing. 

What if I disagree with the decision?

If you disagree with the judge’s decision you have the right to appeal.  The decision will give instructions on how to appeal.  Be sure to follow the instructions.  There are strict due dates and requirements.