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September 23, 2013


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Anonymous JOnes

My initial reaction is that this report gets almost everything wrong, and avoids sticking law schools with any culpable consequences.

The winners:
- The law school diploma mills and online profiteers

The losers:
- Taxpayers
- Practicing lawyers.

Please consider alternative:
1. Rethinking the current pricing scheme to CAP FEDERAL AID so that schools do not soak students.
2. I have no problem with varied approaches to legal education, except that I fear that it might be code for "approve lots of online law schools."
3. Pushing for more skills and competency should be revised to "requiring more skills and competency and faculty with appropriate knowledge to teach it."
4. Allowing more legal services to be delivered by non-lawyers. How did this sneak in there? There already are too few jobs for too many graduates. This will almost certainly mean at least some number of fewer jobs for lawyers. With the ABA's embrace of off shoring discovery and document review, I wonder what they are thinking. The easier, low end law services (form filling, document review, family court appearances) are how a lot of young lawyers get their start. We're going to make it harder for these poor people to break into an even more crowded profession?

Crazy proposals!

John Thompson

There seems to be an issue with the script for your Twitter button. Opening the page caused me to download 28 copies of it.

Anonymous JOnes

I have specific thoughts regarding the skills, competency and training that should be provided to law students, but that is not. I wanted to provide it here, lest I be labeled a critic and my comments disregarded.

When I was in law school more than a decade ago, a very well respected federal appellate (and formerly trial) judge told my class that you can find a judicial opinions out there to say just about anything. What's persuasive to the Court are facts.

The biggest difference between the world where you live and the world where real litigators live is that our lives are run by the development of facts. Yours are spent examining the law and debating ideas. There is merit to your work, at least to some extent. The problem is that baby lawyers have never really been taught that facts matter. That if you dig for facts or shape certain facts, then you can win your case, or you can be prepared for a defense, or you can anticipate where the litigation fights will be.

This could be taught in law school, but perhaps not by the current faculty. Issue spotting exams are well and good and focus on the grey areas, but what practitioners do is very different. I not once had faculty ask the next question, what to do about these ambiguous facts.

Rather than examining a mess from the perspective of a judge, which is how almost all exams go, how will a good lawyer approach your stock facts?
These are the facts x, y, z. How will you prove your case? Where are the problems? How do you propose addressing them? What discovery do you need? What fights should you avoid billing your client for because they're sure losers?

Teach how to be a lawyer. Or hire someone who can.

Michelle Meyer


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