Annual Meeting

Legal education council to discuss admission standards, reorganization

  • Print.

Chicago Intercontinental

The council meeting takes place at Chicago’s Intercontinental Hotel. elesi /

While awaiting ABA House of Delegates action on two major legal education resolutions, the council of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar will discuss guidance for admissions standards and reporting disclosures during the open session of its Friday meeting.

Specific standards mentioned in the council’s agenda include 509, which covers law school disclosures, and 501, which requires that law schools only admit candidates who appear capable of completing law school and passing a bar exam. Meeting materials can be found here.

When the House meets on Monday and Tuesday, it is likely to vote on long-discussed resolutions to end requirements that accredited law schools use admissions tests and to restructure the council itself.

In May the council approved a proposal to cut Standard 503 requiring the tests and to beef up Standard 501 to include the use of admission credentials and academic attrition when determining accreditation compliance. Under ABA rules, the House reviews standards revisions, and it can send a proposed rule back to the council twice for review with or without recommendations. The council has the final decision on matters related to law school accreditation.

The House will also consider a resolution to eliminate the Accreditation and Standards Review Committees and to allow the council to absorb their functions. The measure would also amend the section’s Rules of Procedure to shift the periodic review of a law school from a seven-year cycle to a 10-year cycle. The section says the longer cycle provides more time and resources to focus on schools requiring regular oversight, which the section does through an annual interim monitoring process.

The council meeting will also discuss proposed changes to the group’s internal operating procedures. Other items on the agenda include reports from the Presidential Commission on the Future of Legal Education and the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being.

The meeting takes place at the Intercontinental Hotel. The open session runs from 10:45 a.m. to noon and 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Friday. At 6:30 p.m., there will be a reception to honor council member and U.S. District Court Judge Solomon Oliver Jr., who is receiving the group’s Robert J. Kutak Award.

Kutak, who died of a heart attack in 1983, was a council member and Kutak Rock partner, and chaired the Section of Individual Rights, as well as the Commission on Evaluation of Professional Standards.

Oliver, who sits in Cleveland’s Northern District of Ohio, previously chaired Legal Ed’s accreditation committee. A former assistant U.S. attorney who served as chief in the agency’s civil division, Oliver also was a professor and associate dean at Cleveland State University’s Cleveland-Marshall College of Law.

To follow the ABA Journal’s annual meeting coverage, click here or follow #ABAAnnual on Twitter.

Give us feedback, share a story tip or update, or report an error.