As part of the current push to schedule and adjudicate 3020a hearings in a timely manner, administration of the hearing process has been moved over the the TEACH System, with which many of you will already be familiar.
The TEACH System allows your representative, be they union provided or private representation, to work with your employing District to select arbitrators, arrange court reporters, schedule conferences and the hearing itself.
If you retain counsel that is not familiar with the 3020a process be sure to caution them to sign up for the TEACH System quickly. Obtaining a user account for the system does involve some waiting for processing in Albany. A failure to sign up for the system in time to participate in your arbitrator selection could cause you to default on your selection and allow your employing district to unilaterally select an arbitrator.
Before selecting an arbitrator ask your local union representatives for lists of favorable and unfavorable arbitrators. Not all arbitrators are created equal and time should be spent selecting the fairest minded arbitrators who exhibit the greatest attention to detail. A 3020a hearing is almost always won or lost in the details.
Discuss the lists you obtain from your union at length with your representative for the hearing. An intelligent selection of arbitrator is even more important than the selection of a jury in Court because the arbitrator not only fills in for the jury as a finder of fact but also assumes the roll of Judge as well!