Law Schools

Suit Claims Baylor Law School Discriminates Against Applicants Whose GPAs Predated Grade Inflation

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Updated: A certified public accountant who applied to Baylor Law School claims in a lawsuit (PDF) that he is a victim of age discrimination because he went to college before the days of grade inflation.

The pro se suit by C. Michael Kamps of Rockwall, Texas, says Baylor fails to adjust grade point averages of applicants who earned degrees before grade inflation, according to Texas Lawyer’s Tex Parte Blog. Kamps also claims retaliation for filing a Department of Education complaint, citing figures mistakenly released to students on a spreadsheet in April.

Kamps graduated from Texas A&M University with a GPA of 3.2, placing him in the top quarter of his class in 1979, according to the suit. His score on the Law School Admission Test was 169. Kamps said the law school accepted him for less competitive summer sessions, but refused to admit him for classes entering in the fall quarter in 2010 and 2011. He also claims the school changed its scholarship criteria, to require both a minimum GPA of 3.4 and an LSAT of 162, making him ineligible for the money.

“The concept of grade inflation is not radically different than that of currency inflation,” the suit says. “Just as a value expressed ‘in 1979 Dollars’ is different than the value expressed by the same number of ‘today’s Dollars,’ so, too, the UGPA earned in 1979 expresses a different level of academic performance than the same UGPA value earned today.”

Kamps makes a retaliation claim based on the school’s mistaken release of a spreadsheet to Baylor’s incoming fall of 2012 class made up of about 442 students. The attachment included each student’s LSAT scores and GPAs. Baylor asked students to delete the email and keep the information a secret.

Kamps, however, examined the data and concluded that his combined LSAT and grade point averages were better than 68 percent of the admitted class. His LSAT alone is better than 97 percent of the admitted class, he says. The school, however, no longer combines grade point averages and LSAT scores into a single “Baylor Index,” but instead evaluates each component separately, the suit says.

Kamps concludes he was denied admission for the fall 2012 class because of a complaint he filed in October of 2011 with U.S. Department of Education. “The inescapable conclusion is that defendants, in retaliation for plaintiff’s complaint, admitted scores, even hundreds, of candidates with inferior credentials while retaining plaintiff’s application on the wait list,” the suit says.

Baylor spokesperson Lori Fogleman gave this statement to the ABA Journal: “We are aware of the suit, but we do not comment on pending litigation. We are confident that our admissions decisions, including our law school, are rendered within the boundaries of the law and in a manner that is consistent with our own admissions standards as well as national admissions standards.”

Updated at 10:43 a.m. to include Fogleman’s statement.

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