Paul L. Caron
Dean




Friday, April 30, 2021

Weekly Legal Education Roundup

ABA Rejects Florida Coastal Law School's Teach-Out Plan

Following up on my previous post, U.S. Department Of Education Terminates Florida Coastal Law School's Eligibility For Federal Student Loans; ABA Demands Teach-Out Plan:  ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, Notice of Executive Committee Decision — Florida Coastal School of Law Teach-Out Plan (April 2021):

Florida Coastal (2017)At a meeting on April 21, 2021, the Executive Committee of the Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar of the American Bar Association (the “Executive Committee”) considered the Teach-Out Plan submitted by the Florida Coastal School of Law (the “Law School”).

After careful review of the Law School’s submission, the Executive Committee rejected the TeachOut Plan as filed because the Law School did not include several required items and did not provide sufficient detail as to other items.

As provided by Rule 29(k)(2), the Law School is directed to revise and resubmit the Teach-Out Plan on or before May 7, 2021. The revised Teach-Out Plan will be considered by the Council at its May 13-15, 2021, meeting.

ABA Journal, Florida Coastal’s Proposed Teach-Out Plan Dinged by ABA's Legal Ed Section Because of Lack of Details:

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April 30, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

At Least 38 Law Schools (Thus Far) Are Requiring Students To Be Vaccinated To Be On Campus In The Fall

Karen Sloan (Law.com), Returning to Campus in the Fall Will Require COVID-19 Vaccine at Many Law Schools:

If you’re a law student who wants to return to campus next fall, there’s a good chance you’ll need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

More than 100 colleges and universities have announced vaccine mandates for all students in recent weeks, and that list is expanding rapidly. Among the institutions that have already made the call to require students to be vaccinated before they can attend in-person next academic year, at least 38 are home to American Bar Association-accredited law schools. They include Yale, Stanford, Columbia, New York University, Georgetown, George Washington, the University of Pennsylvania, Emory and the University of Michigan.

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April 30, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

60% Of Colleges Won't Require The SAT Or ACT Next Year

1,400+ Accredited, 4-Year Colleges & Universities with ACT/SAT-Optional Testing Policies for Fall, 2022 Admissions:

This list includes bachelor degree granting institutions that do not require recent U.S. high school graduates applying to start classes in fall 2022 to submit ACT/SAT results.

Inside Higher Ed, 1,400 4-Year Colleges Won't Require SAT or ACT Next Year:

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April 30, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Pushing The Envelope: How A Handful Of Innovative Law Professors Delivered Distance Education In The Age Of Langdell

Bernard J. Hibbitts (Pittsburgh), Pushing the Envelope: How a Handful of Innovative Law Professors Delivered Distance Education in the Age of Langdell:

This is the introduction and first section of a much longer paper on university law professors’ brief and ultimately doomed dalliance with correspondence legal education in the 1870s and 1880s before multiple for-profit concerns enthusiastically adopted the method in the 1890s. In this segment I outline the trajectory of the paper and then discuss the legal, social and educational circumstances that led a few maverick law professors at Yale and later Columbia to entertain the radical notion of teaching non-resident students by mail at roughly the same time that Christopher Columbus Langdell was developing the case method at Harvard.

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April 29, 2021 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education | Permalink

Challenges And Opportunities: Intersectional Leadership In Law Schools

Sudha Setty (Dean, Western New England; Google Scholar), Challenges and Opportunities: Intersectional Leadership in Law Schools, 23 U. Pa. J.L. & Soc. Change 363 (2020):

In 2019, the Author organized with Maria Isabel Medina and participated as a panelist in the Roundtable on Intersectionality and Strengths and Challenges in Leadership at the Fourth National People of Color Legal Scholarship Conference. This Essay is one of four in the cited article.

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April 29, 2021 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education | Permalink

Kuehn: Implementation Of The ABA’s New Experiential Training Requirement

TaxProf Blog op-ed:  Implementation of the ABA’s New Experiential Training Requirement: More Whimper Than Bang, by Robert Kuehn (Associate Dean for Clinical Education, Washington University):

Kuehn (2019)When the ABA adopted a new experiential training requirement in 2014, there was hope it would spur law schools to significantly change the way they prepared students for legal practice. The new six-credit requirement in ABA Standard 303(a)(3) was less than the fifteen credits proposed by some educators and did not include a mandate for a law clinic or externship experience. Nonetheless, the six credits were an improvement over the ABA’s previous “substantial instruction” in professional skills requirement.[1] But data from the initial implementation of the new experiential requirement suggest its effect has been more of a whimper than the bang some hoped for, with little evidence it has spurred legal education to enhance the ability of students to get hands-on training in professional skills.

Law schools are required to report annually to the ABA on the number of seats simply “available” to students in law clinic and simulation courses and the number of field placement/externship positions actually “filled.”[2] Data from the first two years of the new six-credit requirement in 2019 and 2020 show no increase in the positions available to students in clinics or simulations and even a decrease in actual enrollment in field placement courses, when normalized to address fluctuations in nationwide law school enrollment. While some law schools have made important changes to their curriculum, the graph below indicates that, on average, schools have not reported positive changes in law clinic, field placement, or simulation data since the ABA’s adoption of the new experiential standard in 2014. The number of clinic seats available per J.D. student in 2014 was 0.27 and still only 0.28 in 2020; field placements decreased from 0.26 in 2014 to 0.24 in 2020; and seats available in simulations likewise decreased over the six-year period from 1.22 to 1.12 per student.

Kuehn 1

Source: ABA 509 Required Disclosures

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April 29, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Which Is More Difficult: The CPA Exam Or The Bar Exam?

Accounting Today, Which Is More Difficult: The CPA Exam or the Bar?:

You might not believe this, but some accountants and attorneys compete for who had the tougher journey to pass their credentialing exam. I sat for the Bar Exam a few years ago and passed on my first try after finishing law school at the age of 58. However, my master’s degree is in accounting, so two years after passing the bar, I decided I might as well try to obtain my CPA license by sitting for the CPA Exam as well. Of course, everyone thought I was a bit crazy, and that is something I expected. What I did not expect was the debate surrounding which exam is harder. ...

It had not occurred to me that sitting for both exams would create a competition among my highly educated colleagues as to who had it worse in their path toward licensure. But it did. So, here is my honest assessment of the two exams. ...

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April 29, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

Race Becomes Crisis Point At University Of Memphis Law School

Memphis Flyer, Race Becomes Crisis Point at U of M Law School:

Memphis Logo (2021)A major potential revolt is brewing in the University of Memphis Law School, based on what Black students and a senior African-American faculty member see as continuing racial injustice on the part of the institution.

The disaffected faculty member is Alena Allen, the wife of Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris, and she has announced an intention to resign to underscore her dissatisfaction with a system in which she says “[f]aculty-favored Black candidates have been denied opportunities to lead.”

Allen’s pending resignation has prompted the University chapter of the National Black Law Students Association to charge the university with “racial bias” and to put forth a series of demands of the administration. This document drew a further reproach in the form of an anonymous email from a “concerned faculty member” who calls upon the rest of the faculty to support the student demands so as to avoid “a catastrophic crisis at the law school.

In her letter of resignation — written, she said, “in the wake of George Floyd’s murder” — Allen, an associate professor and director of faculty research, reviews several instances in which she says credentialed Black applicants were bypassed for promotion and, in one case, for the position of dean, in favor of less well-qualified white applicants.

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April 29, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Why Are There So Few Women Full Professors?

Chronicle of Higher Education op-ed:  Why Are There So Few Women Full Professors?, by Kimberly A. Hamlin (Miami):

Women comprise the majority of college students, graduate students, and assistant professors, but just 36 percent of full professors in the U.S. are women. For women of color and for mothers, the odds of becoming full professor are significantly lower, and in many STEM fields, including medical schools, women comprise less than 30 percent of full professors. In addition to the disparity in numbers, research by Alisa Hicklin Fryar at the University of Oklahoma shows a substantial pay gap as well: Male full professors at research-intensive schools earn on average $10,000 more a year than their female peers.

To help me think through what it means for women to be full professors, I posted a query on Twitter, asking for other women’s experiences with the promotion process. I was overwhelmed with replies. The most common response was from women reporting that they are the first, or even the only, female full professors in their departments. Women have been earning Ph.D.s since the 1870s; how is it possible for so many women to still be the “firsts” or “onlys” in their departments? ...

A recent study shows that just 27 percent of academics who are mothers, compared with 48 percent of fathers, achieve tenure — to say nothing of promotion to full professor. In fact, according to the American Association of University Women, while 70 percent of tenured male professors have children, only 44 percent of tenured women do. Worse still, policies intended to benefit mothers, such as maternity leave, tend instead to benefit new fathers, who use the break from teaching to advance their research. Many mothers replied to my Twitter post that they had given up on becoming full professors, understanding that this goal remains out of reach for most mothers.

he lack of gender parity among full professors is not primarily a pipeline problem (women comprise 45 percent of associate professors); it’s a timing problem. While women earn tenure at nearly the same rate as men, there is a significant divide in research productivity post-tenure. It is one thing to hold on to one’s ambitious research agenda for six years in one’s 30s. It is quite another to sustain an ambitious research agenda into one’s 40s when care for growing children often collides with care for elders. Within the academy — perhaps more so than other fields requiring an advanced degree such as law, medicine, or business — the burden of caregiving falls on women who generally do not have the financial means to hire additional help. ...

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April 28, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

California Considers Future Of Bar Exam, Possible Test Revisions

Blue Ribbon

Bloomberg Law, California Considers Future of Bar Exam, Possible Test Revisions:

A new committee has been named to consider potential changes to California’s bar exam, including administering part or all of the two-day test online, the state Supreme Court said Tuesday.

The Joint Supreme Court/State Bar Blue Ribbon Commission on the Future of the California Bar Exam recommendations follow years-long debate over the usefulness of exams and their practicality for assessing a future lawyer’s performance. It also comes as Covid-19 upended bar exams across the country, delaying tests and moving many online.

The 19-member committee will recommend to the bar and court whether a bar exam is the correct tool to determine minimum competence to practice law, the panel’s charter said.

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April 28, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Law School Diversity And Inclusion Award To White Conservative Law Professor Sparks Backlash Among Students

Yahoo News, UT Diversity and Inclusion Award Recipient Sparks Backlash Among Students:

Strang 3Students at the University of Toledo are pushing back against the selection of a law professor who, as a Harvard law student, opined in support of laws against same-sex relationships, as the school's faculty Diversity and Inclusion Award winner.

Last Wednesday, the university awarded Lee Strang, a faculty law professor since 2008, its second annual Inclusive Excellence Award for faculty. The award — which started in 2019, but was paused in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic — is nomination-based, and seeks to honor individuals who display efforts to make UT a "more inclusive and equitable" campus.

After the announcement of the award, backlash started on social media among students and Facebook commenters who resurfaced an op-ed from 2003 from Mr. Strang, then a conservative-leaning law student at Harvard Law School.

In the essay titled "Private" acts, public harm, published in The Harvard Law Record [more here], Mr. Strang commented on the landmark Supreme Court's Lawrence vs. Texas case which eventually ruled that U.S. laws prohibiting private homosexual activity are unconstitutional. In his piece dated before the Supreme Court ruling, Mr. Strang argued certain groups of people were harmed by "a society that does not proscribe homosexual activity."

"Parents such as my wife and I are especially harmed because a corrupt society that does not seek to prevent homosexual activity makes it more difficult for us to properly raise our children," Mr. Strang wrote.

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April 28, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

White Law Professor Claims Black School Paid Him Less Because Of His Race

Texas Lawyer, White Law Professor Claims Black School Paid Him Less Because of His Race:

ChampionA Houston law professor who claims that Texas’ historically Black law school discriminated against him because he is white has taken a second shot at pleading his race discrimination claim.

After Houston’s federal court dismissed the legal theory that was the basis for law professor Walter Champion’s race discrimination claim, he has changed his argument to claim that Texas Southern University Thurgood Marshall School of Law demoted him and failed to promote him because he is a white employee at the historically Black university.

Champion has worked at Texas Southern’s law school for 34 years and he alleged that his salary is much lower and he’s been denied titled professorships and chair positions because he is white. Among other things, he argued that he used to hold a titled sports and entertainment law professorship, but the school didn’t renominate him and instead has left the post vacant. ...

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April 28, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Walking The Tightrope: Reflections Of A Black Female Law Professor

Njeri Mathis Rutledge (South Texas), Walking the Tightrope: Reflections of a Black Female Law Professor, 43 Campbell L. Rev. 233 (2021):

In a sobering moment, I realized that my success (and that of many people of color) stems from our ability to normalize daily racism — Njeri Rutledge (2020)

As a Black female law professor, I often walk an invisible tightrope, carefully avoiding any misstep for fear of falling. The problem of racism makes that tightrope particularly difficult. There is a misperception that racism does not impact successful people, but only those who are uneducated or have a low socioeconomic status. Nothing could be further from the truth. As a Black professional woman, I deal with racism constantly.

I walk a daily tightrope where I must appear as though all is well despite the barrage of images of unarmed Blacks being killed, racist attacks, and the growth of white supremacy. Even the legal academy fails to provide a haven from racist attitudes.

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April 27, 2021 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education | Permalink

Law Schools, Students, And Bar Examiners Face A Brave New Online World

Karen Sloan (Law.com), Law Schools, Students, and Bar Examiners Face a Brave New Online World:

It’s fair to say that change comes slowly in the traditionally staid universe of legal education, where progress tends to be measured in increments. Not this year.

Over the past 12 months, law schools have figured out how to train new lawyers from behind a computer screen—a delivery method the legal academy has largely resisted for the past two decades. (The American Bar Association suspended its rules that limit the number of credits J.D. students may take online, and it might roll back such rules permanently.) They’ve experimented with new ways to connect with law students when an in-person office visit isn’t in the cards, or a brown-bag lunch session is off the table, and even simulated law firm summer associate programs for students who were left hanging by canceled summer programs. They’ve successfully transitioned moot court and trial advocacy competitions online by harnessing sophisticated virtual meeting platforms. And they’ve figured out how to safely hold graduation ceremonies, both virtual and in person.

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April 27, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

85% Of The Way Through The Fall 2021 Law School Admissions Cycle: Applications Are Up At 96% Of Law Schools, With Biggest Increases Among The Highest LSAT Bands

We are now 85% of the way through Fall 2021 law school admissions season. The number of law school applicants reported by LSAC is up 19.9% compared to last year at this time.

LSAC 1

191 of the 200 law schools are experiencing an increase in applications. Applications are up 50% or more at 18 law schools, and 30% or more at 85 law schools:

LSAC 2

Applicants are up the most in Northwest (26.1%), Southeast (24.4%), and New England (24.3%); and up the least in the Great Lakes (15.9%), Other (17.2%), and South Central (18.1%):

LSAC 3

Applicants' LSAT scores are up 63.8% in the 170-180 band, 27.9% in the 160-169 band, 10.3% in the 150-159 band, and 2.6% in the 120-149 band:

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April 27, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Law Grads Hiring Report: Job Stats For The Class Of 2020

Karen Sloan (Law.com), Law Grads Hiring Report: Job Stats for the Class of 2020:

Considering that a global pandemic rendered a massive blow to the economy just as they wrapped up their legal studies, the J.D. class of 2020 did surprisingly well on the entry-level job market. The latest figures from the American Bar Association show that the percentage of recent graduates who landed full-time, long-term jobs that require bar passage within 10 months of leaving campus was 70%. That’s down from 72% the previous year—which was a historic high—but the decline was not nearly as much as many legal educators feared.

Those aggregate numbers don’t provide a full picture of what happened at individual law schools, and where graduates did—and didn’t—find work. Law.com has dug through the trove of jobs data released this month by the ABA to break down how each law school performed in 10 different areas.

We’ve ranked schools according to the percentage of 2020 J.D.s in bar passage-required jobs (the University of Chicago Law School edged Columbia Law School out of the top spot in that category this year); the percentage of grads in federal clerkships (again, Chicago unseated Stanford Law School there); and jobs at large law firms (Columbia retained its No. 1 position.)

Karen Sloan (Law.com), A Contrarian Take on the Latest Law Grad Job Numbers:

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April 27, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Law Prof Stacy Leeds Challenges Oklahoma's Attempt To Tax Her Tribal Income After McGirt

Following up on Stacy Leeds (Arizona State; Google Scholar) & Lonnie Beard (Arkansas), A Wealth of Sovereign Choices: Tax Implications of McGirt v. Oklahoma and the Promise of Tribal Economic Development, 56 Tulsa L. Rev. __ (2021):  Stacy Leeds, the nation's first Native American female dean, has filed this 12-page individual income tax protest letter with the Oklahoma Tax Commission after they adjusted her 2019 return. She has given me permission to share the letter "in hopes that the treaty arguments and other legal authorities are 'out there' for educational purposes":

LeedsOn March 4, 2021, I received your letter postmarked February 25, 2021 notifying me that you adjusted my Oklahoma 2019 income tax return. I hereby protest and object to all aspects of your adjustment. Under Oklahoma law, the laws of the United States and the laws of the Cherokee Nation, your adjustment is inappropriate and without legal authority. I respectfully request you reverse your course of action and take the additional steps outlined in my protest letter. ...

For your records, I have attached a copy of my Arkansas income tax returns. The Arkansas return confirms the amount paid to Arkansas matches the credit taken on my Oklahoma return. Under Oklahoma law, I am entitled to a tax credit for taxes paid to another state and my return was correct.

I have uploaded the following information into your online system proving my legal status as a Cherokee Nation citizen and my legal status as a Cherokee Nation resident. ...

Your letter incorrectly summarizes Oklahoma law with respect to Oklahoma income tax authority over resident tribal citizens. Your letter instructs me (and similarly situated persons who receive this form letter) that Oklahoma will “disallow or adjust” all income unless all three requirements are met: “be a tribal member, live and work on Indian land to which the member belongs.” (emphasis added)

This language is contrary law and very misleading. There is no requirement that a tribal citizen “live and work on Indian land.” A tribal citizen need only live within their Nation’s jurisdictional boundaries and derive their income from sources inside that same Nation.

Oklahoma lacks authority to tax the income of resident tribal citizens. A resident tribal citizen’s income does not simply qualify them to ask Oklahoma officials for an “exemption” every year on a required Oklahoma income tax filing. Oklahoma is without any governmental authority over that person, as it relates earnings derived inside Indian country.

At present, you require each resident tribal citizen to carry the burden and expense of annually filing an Oklahoma tax return and producing repetitive additional documentation in order to be considered for an exemption. This affords Oklahoma repeat decision-making authority over tribal citizens inside Indian country. Like McGirt v. Oklahoma, this is an Oklahoma overreach unsupported by legal authority.

Only those tribal citizens residing outside their tribe’s jurisdiction, or who derive Oklahoma income from outside their tribe’s jurisdiction, should bear the burden and expense of filing Oklahoma income tax returns and producing several unnecessary documents year after year. Should a material change in their tax circumstance occur that truly subjects them to Oklahoma authority, then they should have a duty to file.

To Oklahoma’s (substantial) financial benefit, OTC’s letters and instructions mislead tribal citizens to such a degree that tribal citizens are highly unlikely to seek an exemption or challenge Oklahoma’s inflated authority. This results in millions of dollars of overpayment by tribal citizens who are unlawfully subjected to Oklahoma income taxes. This over-taxation occurs, in large part, because Oklahoma knowingly misrepresents the law. The United States Supreme Court has repeatedly rejected Oklahoma’s extension of state jurisdiction over Indians inside Indian country.

I respectfully ask that you correct this language in future correspondences and be more transparent in your form letters and instructions to the public. You have a duty to truthfully communicate. You have a substantial interest in working together with tribal Nations, but instead you mislead and deceive tribal citizens under threat of penalty.

The default is not Oklahoma jurisdiction. The default is that Oklahoma lacks jurisdiction to tax the earnings of resident tribal citizens.

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April 27, 2021 in Legal Education, New Cases, Tax | Permalink

Monday, April 26, 2021

Academic Feeder Judges: Are Clerkships The Key To Academia?

Howard Wasserman (Florida International), Academic Feeder Judges: Are Clerkships the Key to Academia?, 105 Judicature 1 (2021):

This paper identifies “academic feeder judges”—the federal judges (especially from courts of appeals) for whom law professors clerked at the beginning of their careers and the judges who “produce” law professors from the ranks of their former clerks. The study is based on a summer 2019 review of publicly available biographies and c.v.’s of full-time faculty at ABA-accredited law schools, identifying more than 3000 “academic former clerks” and the judges for whom each clerked. From this, the paper identifies:

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April 26, 2021 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education | Permalink

Call For Student Tax Papers: 2021 Chris Bergin Award For Excellence In Writing

Christopher E. Bergin Award for Excellence in Writing:

BerginThe Christopher E. Bergin Award for Excellence in Writing recognizes superior student writing on unsettled questions in tax law or policy. It is named in honor of the late Christopher E. Bergin, former president and publisher of Tax Analysts and longtime editor of Tax Notes Federal. The award, given annually, epitomizes the qualities that Chris championed.

Winning papers will be published in one of Tax Notes' weekly magazines. Winners will receive one-year subscriptions to all three magazines.

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April 26, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Analysts, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Law School Rankings By Ultimate Bar Passage Rates

The ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar has released comprehensive data on bar passage outcomes for ABA-accredited law schools:

The new data shows that in the aggregate, 89.99% of 2018 law graduates who sat for a bar exam passed it within two years of graduation (90.10% with Diploma Privilege). The two-year “ultimate” aggregate success rate is slightly better than the 89.47% comparable figure for 2017 graduates. The 2018 ultimate bar pass data also reveals that 94.98% of all graduates sat for a bar exam within two years of graduation, and that schools were able to obtain bar passage information from 98.84% of 2018 graduates.

First-time takers in 2020 achieved an aggregate 82.83% pass rate (83.66% with Diploma Privilege), which is a 3-percentage point increase over the comparable 79.64% pass rate for 2019. Diploma Privilege considers those waived into the practice of law without taking the bar because of special rules during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Three law schools have a perfect 100% 2-year ultimate bar passage rate: Belmont, University of Chicago, and University of Washington. Here are the 107 law schools with ultimate bar passage rates of 90% or more (not including diploma privilege) (the full data for all 197 law schools is here):

1 Belmont 100.00%
1 Chicago 100.00%
1 Univ. of Washington 100.00%
4 Boston Univ. 99.55%
5 Cornell 99.49%
6 Pennsylvania 99.16%
7 Yale 99.04%
8 Virginia 98.99%
9 Stanford 98.91%
10 NYU 98.89%
11 Vanderbilt 98.86%
12 Florida Int'l 98.47%
13 UC-Berkeley 98.34%
14 Duke 98.14%
15 Harvard 97.86%
16 William & Mary 97.80%
17 Liberty 97.62%
18 Pittsburgh 97.56%
19 St. Louis 97.44%
20 Michigan 97.27%
21 North Carolina 97.24%
22 Minnesota 97.21%
23 George Washington 97.19%
24 Kentucky 97.12%
25 Columbia 97.07%
26 Texas 97.06%
27 Florida State 97.04%
28 Cardozo 97.03%
29 Georgia State 97.01%
30 St. John's 96.88%
31 Seton Hall 96.82%
32 BYU 96.72%
33 Toledo 96.49%
34 Oregon 96.46%
35 Oklahoma 96.32%
36 Fordham 96.29%
37 UCLA 96.25%
38 Samford 96.06%
39 Notre Dame 96.02%
40 Hawaii 96.00%
41 Texas Tech 95.92%
42 St. Thomas (MN) 95.88%
43 Utah 95.79%
44 SMU 95.73%
45 Washington Univ. 95.52%
46 Boston College 95.50%
47 Georgetown 95.47%
48 UC-Davis 95.35%
49 Colorado 95.29%
50 Georgia 95.24%
51 Illinois 95.17%
52 Ohio State 94.94%
53 Louisiana State 94.90%
53 New Mexico 94.90%
55 Texas A&M 94.78%
56 Alabama 94.74%
57 San Diego 94.59%
57 Washington & Lee 94.59%
59 Arizona State 94.55%
60 Campbell 94.53%
61 Missouri-Columbia 94.38%
61 South Texas 94.38%
63 New Hampshire 94.37%
64 Villanova 94.27%
65 Northeastern 94.16%
66 Syracuse 94.08%
67 Penn State-Univ. Park 94.07%
68 Cleveland State 93.90%
69 Nebraska 93.81%
70 Temple 93.63%
71 Oklahoma City 93.62%
72 South Carolina 93.58%
73 Penn State-Dickinson 93.55%
74 Duquesne 93.33%
75 Loyola-L.A. 93.26%
76 Regent 93.22%
77 Pepperdine 93.21%
78 Miami 93.13%
79 Tulsa 93.10%
80 George Mason 93.06%
81 USC 92.82%
82 Tennessee 92.79%
83 Houston 92.76%
84 Northwestern 92.56%
85 Maryland 92.46%
86 Florida 92.45%
87 Kansas 92.31%
88 UC-Irvine 92.04%
89 Massachusetts 91.84%
90 Richmond 91.76%
90 Loyola-Chicago 91.76%
92 Gonzaga 91.67%
93 Connecticut 91.46%
94 Baylor 91.23%
95 Washburn 91.21%
96 Lincoln Memorial 91.07%
97 Chapman 91.04%
98 Chicago-Kent 90.82%
99 Quinnipiac 90.59%
100 Indiana-Bloom. 90.54%
101 Louisville 90.38%
102 Santa Clara 90.32%
103 Case Western 90.27%
104 Brooklyn 90.22%
105 Maine 90.00%
105 Wake Forest 90.00%
105 Widener (PA) 90.00%

Ten law schools have pass rates below the 75% rate (including diploma privilege) in ABA accreditation standard 316, which requires a bar passage rate of at least 75% within two years of graduation:

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April 26, 2021 in Law School Rankings, Legal Ed News, Legal Ed Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink

NALP: Law Firms Cut Associate Hiring By Nearly 50% In 2020 Due To COVID-19

NALP Foundation, Update on Associate Attrition:

Associate AttritionThe NALP Foundation has released its annual Update on Associate Attrition report, a compilation of data on law firm associate hiring and departures for Calendar Year 2020, with an analysis of the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on their hiring and retention efforts.

Among the key findings:

  • Overall associate hiring among participating firms declined significantly in 2020, decreasing nearly 50% from 2019.
  • In 2020, participating firms experienced an overall net loss in hires relative to departures.
  • Both entry-level and lateral racially/ethnically diverse associates had shorter tenures with their firm than their non-diverse peers.
  • The top reasons cited for entry-level and lateral associates’ departures differed:  for entry-level associates, these were “career change to other type of legal job” and “pursuit of specific practice interests” while for lateral associates, these were “unmet work quality standards” and “unknown reasons.”

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April 26, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

TaxProf Blog Weekend Roundup

Sunday, April 25, 2021

God's Mirth Sanctifies Our Laughter

Wall Street Journal op-ed:  God Is in the Punch Line, by Mike Kerrigan (Hunton Andrews Kurth, Charlotte, NC):

Kerrigan 3G.K. Chesterton closed out Orthodoxy, his 1908 masterpiece of Christian apologetics, with a radical thought. He proposed that the one thing too great for God to have shown us when he walked on the earth was his mirth. This suggests that the idea of a blissfulness we can’t even imagine was important to Chesterton. The mere possibility it’s true, that one thing our mortal minds can’t begin to fathom about God’s nature is his joyousness, offers me consolation beyond measure.

It comforts me because it means that laughter—one manifestation of earthly joy I love to experience—is far from mundane. It can be sanctifying. In its edifying echo can be heard something important about the Divine, unreachable by reason alone, if only we listen. Rollicking mysticism that effortlessly makes your sides hurt: What’s not to like about that?

This hopeful insight makes me think differently about cheery laughter. Does humor reflect something about God’s loving creativity, conceiving of something good out of nothing? Or his perfect patience in playing the long game with us, his imperfect creations, which surely requires a sense of humor? ...

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April 25, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Evangelicals And Secularists On Abortion, Covid, Life, And Death

The Christian Post op-ed:  Evangelicals and Secularists On Abortion, Covid and Death, by Robert F. Cochran, Jr. (Pepperdine; Festschrift; Google Scholar):

Cochran 2I live in a very secular town and for 40 years have been part of America’s very secular legal academy. During that time, I also have been an evangelical and active in evangelical churches. I travel pretty comfortably in both circles, but at times I am puzzled by the reactions of each group to different issues. Most recently, I have been trying to understand their differing responses to Covid and abortion. Many evangelicals are pro-life on abortion, not on Covid. Secularists generally are pro-life on Covid, not on abortion. (Compare Source and Source). These differences were brought home to me recently by several images when my wife and I drove from the heavily secular Charlottesville, Virginia, to the heavily evangelical Waco, Texas.

As for Covid, in Charlottesville people wear masks in restaurants, crowds, and stores. Someone without a mask is likely to be shouted into compliance. That all changed as we drove south. From Tennessee through Texas, we seldom saw a mask. The Texas attitude is illustrated by the experience of a friend who came to Texas on a business trip. He offered his elbow to a business contact in a friendly, somewhat socially-distanced manner. The Texan smiled and drawled, “We don’t do that around here,” and warmly offered his hand. My friend conceded (and excused himself shortly thereafter to wash his hands).

As for abortion, on the way out of Charlottesville, we drove past a conveniently located abortion clinic (where someone had placed a sadly ironic “Black Lives Matter” sign). In Waco, one of the largest billboards in town recently pictured a woman crying and read: “’Lamento mi aborto.’ Por favor considere una adopción” [I'm sorry for my abortion. Please consider an adoption.]" When we visited Waco, the local Planned Parenthood Clinic was closed.

These attitudes toward death have consequences in both law and public policy. In recent years, heavily evangelical states (Mississippi, Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama, and Louisiana) have passed restrictive abortion laws, while heavily secular states (New York and Virginia) have passed pro-abortion laws. On the Covid front, heavily evangelical states have been less inclined to impose restrictions than heavily secular states. Evangelical schools and schools in heavily evangelical areas have been significantly more likely to remain open during Covid than secular/public schools. (Compare Source and Source). 

Why are evangelicals and secularists each internally divided on abortion and Covid? Why is each group so vehemently pro-life on one issue and not-so-much on the other? ...

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April 25, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Explicit Instruction In Legal Education: Boon Or Spoon?

Beth Brennan (Montana), Explicit Instruction in Legal Education: Boon or Spoon?, 52 U. Mem. L. Rev. ___ (2021):

Legal education too often teaches students how to be lawyers by teaching them as though they already are lawyers. Like other disciplines, legal education fails to consistently recognize the meaningful cognitive differences between novices and experts. Novice learners use their existing schema to make sense of what happens in the classroom. Blinded by the curse of knowledge and loathe to ruin students’ future as creative thinkers, law professors frequently teach novice learners as though they are mini-experts — assuming, omitting, rushing. 

Explicit instruction is an important pedagogical tool that should be used intentionally and thoughtfully in the law school classroom. Law is not so special that it has its own pedagogical rules. Cognitive psychology research supports initial explicit instruction in new domains — even law.

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April 25, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Teaching | Permalink

Saturday, April 24, 2021

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

  1. Edward Cantu (UMKC) & Lee Jussim (Rutgers), Microaggressions, Questionable Science, and Free Speech
  2. Bryan Camp (Texas Tech), Lesson From The Tax Court: Blind Reliance Is Not Reasonable Reliance
  3. Jordan Rothman (Rothman Law Firm), I Wish I Partied More In Law School
  4. Multiple Authors, COVID-19 Has Accelerated College Closings
  5. Wall Street Journal, Stanford Law Profs' Son Is A 'Vegan Crypto Billionaire'
  6. CIA, CIA Seeks To Hire A Tax Lawyer
  7. AccessLex/LSSSE, Predicting Law School And Bar Success
  8. Taleed El-Sabawi (BIPOC Professor, Elon) & Madison Fields (BIPOC Student, Elon), The Discounted Labor of BIPOC Students & Faculty
  9. Jim Gash (President, Pepperdine), A Prayer for Healing
  10. Paul Caron (Dean, Pepperdine), 3L Commissioning Ceremony

April 24, 2021 in About This Blog, Legal Education, Tax, Weekly Top 10 TaxProf Blog Posts | Permalink

Texas House Of Representatives Approves Two New Law Schools

Karen Sloan (Texas Lawyer), Two New Law Schools for Texas? Bills Would Pave the Way for Legal Education Along the Border:

TexasLawmakers in Texas’ House of Representatives have given their blessing to not one, but potentially two new law schools near the Mexico border.

On April 15, the state House passed two bills that that would allow any of Texas’ university systems to establish new public law schools in El Paso and the Rio Grande Valley. Both bills have been sent on the Texas Senate for further consideration.

Bill sponsors say that those two areas are underserved by lawyers, and that creating law schools there will give locals the opportunity to study, graduate, and remain in those communities to serve those who live there. ...

The closest law school to El Paso is Texas Tech University School of Law, 350 miles away in Lubbock. The nearest option for Rio Grande Valley residents who want to become lawyers is St. Mary’s University School of Law in San Antonio—about 300 miles away. ...

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April 24, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Tax Prof Baby: Marty Herschel Kleiman

Marty Herschel Kleiman
Congratulations to Ariel and Benji Kleiman

April 24, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

Lederman & Christians: Last-Minute Exam Prep

Quick tips from Professors Lederman & Christians on how to prepare for and study for a law school exam! 

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April 24, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

Friday, April 23, 2021

Weekly Legal Education Roundup

Next Week's Virtual Tax Workshop

Thursday, April 29: Daniel Hemel (Chicago; Google Scholar) will present Regulation and Redistribution with Lives in the Balance, 88 U. Chi. L. Rev. __ (2021), virtually at Penn State-University Park as part of its Faculty Works in Progress Series. If you would like to attend, please contact Dean Hari M. Osofsky.

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April 23, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Courts Differ On Whether Colleges Should Pay Tuition Refunds For Classes Shifted Online During COVID-19

Law.com, In COVID Tuition Refund Cases, Courts Continue to Differ on Whether Schools 'Promised' In-Person Learning:

Class actions by students seeking tuition reimbursements from colleges and universities that went remote during the pandemic continue to hinge on whether the schools were contractually obligated to provide in-person instruction. But judges across the country have so far had very different answers to that question.

As Law.com’s Amanda Bronstad reported back in October, judges, faced with a lack of specific written contracts in these cases, have been forced to look to other sources, such as tuition agreements and marketing materials, to determine whether an institution for higher learning had made a pact to provide in-person learning.

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April 23, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

U.S. Tax Court's Tax Trailblazers: Glenn Carrington

U.S. Tax Court's Diversity & Inclusion Series, Tax Trailblazers: Mentoring the Next Generation:

CarringtonPlease join the United States Tax Court for the third in its series of monthly programs celebrating diversity and inclusion in tax law. Moderated by Chief Judge Maurice B. Foley, April’s webinar will focus on Glenn Carrington, Dean of the School of Business at Norfolk State University. Today at 7:00-8:15 PM EST (register here).

Glenn Carrington is the Dean of the School of Business at Norfolk State University. He holds a B.S. degree in Business from Norfolk State and a J.D. from the University of Virginia. Prior to academia, he spent many years advising Fortune 500 clients on financial and international transaction tax issues at major accounting firms, including EY (where he served on the executive board), Deloitte, and Arthur Andersen & Co. (where he served as the managing partner of the National Tax Office). He also served at the IRS as Assistant Chief Counsel (Income Tax & Accounting), Office of Chief Counsel, and as a Branch Chief in the Office of the Assistant Chief Counsel (Corporate).

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April 23, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

The Power Of Empathy: Cultivating Culturally Competent Lawyers

Eunice Park (Southwestern), The Power of Empathy: Cultivating Culturally Competent Lawyers:

The ability to connect with diverse clients and audiences is not a soft skill, but a power skill. This connection is just as important as substantive knowledge and is essential for the competent practice of law. Fostering that connection must start with recognizing one’s own positionality, and thus one challenge in the classroom is cultivating the ability to recognize positionality. One way to cultivate this aspect of cultural competence is by building empathy.

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April 23, 2021 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education | Permalink

Thursday, April 22, 2021

2021 Law School Applicant Pool Shaping Up To Be The Largest In A Decade

Karen Sloan (Law.com), 2021 Law School Applicant Pool Shaping Up to Be the Largest in a Decade:

The surge in law school applications this year has not abated.

The number of applicants to American Bar Association-accredited law schools is up 20% compared to a year ago—the same increase the Law School Admission Council reported in early March. The fact that people continue to apply in large numbers even as the admissions cycle winds down throws cold water on the theory that prospective law students were simply applying earlier than normal because the COVID-19 pandemic left them with more time on their hands.

In fact, data from the Council show that the number of people who have applied to ABA law schools for this fall has already surpassed the total number of applicants from 2020 with weeks still to go. Thus far, 63,733 people have applied for fall 2021 admission. That’s more than the 63,384 total who applied last cycle. Put another way, the national law school applicant pool already has 10,723 more people than it did at this time last year. If that trend holds steady in the final weeks of the cycle, law schools will end the year with approximately 76,000 applicants. That would be the single-largest applicant pool since 2011, which represented the beginning of a sustained downturn in law school applicants.

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April 22, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Pepperdine 3L Commissioning Ceremony

Capture 4

We hosted our final Wednesday night bible study of the academic year last night: our traditional commission ceremony to celebrate our graduating 3Ls.  I gave each of the 3Ls a gift that I hope they will keep on their desk to remind them of their time at Pepperdine and encourage them to live a life marked by forgiveness (of strangers, friends and family, and most importantly, themselves). Current and former faculty and staff spoke words of life into each of the 3Ls. My wife Courtney closed the evening by praying over the 3Ls:

Lord, thank you for this group of 3L students who have enriched our lives here at Pepperdine over the past three years.  It seems like yesterday when we welcomed these students into our Pepperdine family as newly admitted 1L students.  Little did we know then what was in store for them here — a fire that interrupted their studies and preparation for their first semester exams, followed by a global pandemic that has meant that nearly half their time here has been spent in online classes physically removed from the campus and their classmates.  Despite all of these challenges, this group of very special, resilient students has remained faithful to You and to each other, finding ways to remain hopeful and connected to and engaged with our community. We have been blessed by each one of them, and will miss them dearly next year.

We pray that despite all the challenges of the past three years each of our 3Ls being commissioned tonight will look back on their time here as a gift, not only in terms of the strong friendships and connections that have been forged, but also because their experience here has equipped them with the educational and emotional and spiritual foundation for successful and fulfilling careers and lives in service to You.

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April 22, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Yale Hosts Virtual Symposium Today On Citation And The Law

Yale hosts a virtual symposium today and tomorrow on Citation and the Law (program):

Yale Citation and the Law ConferenceThis FREE symposium will highlight the scholarship of law librarians and faculty interested in issues ranging from the US News and World Reports rankings for scholarly productivity, to link rot, to empirical research in the use of citations, and more.  Keynote speaker Fred Shapiro will set the stage with his paper “The Most-Cited Legal Scholars Revisited” to be published in the University of Chicago Law Review.  All the papers will be published in a book by the Hein Company.

To quote Legal Reference Services Quarterly editor Mike Chiorazzi, “If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a profession to support a symposium like this.  The Yale Law Library, the ALL-SIS Committee on Research and Scholarship, the Boulder Conference workshopping team, and LRSQ all pulled together to make this  symposium happen.  What has emerged is an impressive collection of first-rate scholarship that advances our understanding of law librarianship and legal information management.”

Panel #1

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April 22, 2021 in Conferences, Legal Ed Conferences, Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

2021 Tannenwald Tax Writing Competition

Tannenwald (2013)The Theodore Tannenwald, Jr. Foundation for Excellence in Tax Scholarship and American College of Tax Counsel are sponsoring the 2021 Tannenwald Tax Writing Competition:

Named for the late Tax Court Judge Theodore Tannenwald, Jr., and designed to perpetuate his dedication to legal scholarship of the highest quality, the Tannenwald Writing Competition is open to all full- or part-time law school students, undergraduate or graduate. Papers on any federal or state tax-related topic may be submitted in accordance with the Competition Rules.

Prizes:

  • 1st Place:  $5,000
  • 2nd Place: $2,500
  • 3rd Place:  $1,500

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April 22, 2021 in Legal Education, Tax, Teaching | Permalink

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

CIA Seeks To Hire A Tax Lawyer

The CIA's Office of General Counsel seeks to hire a Tax Attorney:

CIA (2021)Tax Attorneys provide legal advice to the Agency on the full range of tax matters.
$72,030 -$170,800*
*Higher starting salary possible depending on experience level

About the Job
The Office of General Counsel (OGC) of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) provides legal advice and policy counsel to the Director of the CIA (DCIA) and other CIA officers on a variety of legal issues, to include intelligence and national security law; procurement and acquisition law; employment and personnel law; government ethics; fiscal law; general administrative law; privacy and civil liberties, and legislative affairs.

As the Tax Attorney for the CIA’s Office of General Counsel, you will be responsible for providing legal advice to the Agency on the full range of tax matters.  You will handle the unique and challenging tax-related issues attendant to the Agency conducting its national security mission.

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April 21, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

The Discounted Labor Of BIPOC Law Students And Faculty

Taleed El-Sabawi (BIPOC Professor, Elon; Google Scholar) & Madison Fields (BIPOC Student, Elon), The Discounted Labor of BIPOC Students & Faculty, 109 Cal. L. Rev. ___ (2021):

Black Law Students experienced a different COVID-19 pandemic than their majority counterparts due in part to the emotional and physical toll caused by the violent, public mistreatment of Black persons at the hands of law enforcement. While some law faculty at some institutions were proactive in identifying the struggles that their Black students were facing, most law faculty and administrators did nothing—prompting Black students to take time away from their studies to organize, draft letters, gather signatures, and have very uncomfortable conversations with university administrators and faculty about the need for change.

Meanwhile, Black faculty and faculty of color, who were experiencing their own trials with pandemic teaching, childcare, increased service obligations and mental fatigue from the political and racial unrest, were often called upon to contribute substantial time to the design and implementation of the “diversity” or “anti-racism” initiatives—to the policy changes and programs that were necessary to increase the diversity of the schools and to create inclusive environments for their BIPOC students and faculty.

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April 21, 2021 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education | Permalink

ABA Releases Class Of 2020 Jobs Data: Pandemic, Delayed Bar Exams Push Full-Credit Jobs Rate Down 3.2 Percentage Points

ABA Legal Education Section Releases Employment Data For Graduating Law Class of 2020:

Employment data for the graduating law class of 2020 as reported by American Bar Association-approved law schools to the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar is now publicly available.

An online table provides select national outcomes and side-by-side comparisons for the classes of 2019 and 2020. Further reports on employment outcomes, including links to individual school outcomes and spreadsheets aggregating those reports, will be available within a few days on the ABA Required Disclosures page of the section’s website. ...

For the class of 2020, the aggregated school data shows that 26,638 (77.4% of total graduates) of the 2020 graduates of the 197 law schools enrolling students and approved by the ABA to offer the J.D. degree were employed in full-time, long-term Bar Passage Required or J.D. Advantage jobs roughly 10 months after graduation. That compares to 27,352 (80.6% of total graduates) of the graduates reporting similar full-time, long-term jobs last year.

ABA Chart

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April 21, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

I Wish I Partied More In Law School

Jordan Rothman (The Rothman Law Firm, New York & New Jersey), I Wish I Partied More In Law School:

Law school often gets portrayed as a time when people need to be focused on their studies and cannot have fun with their classmates. This perception is reinforced by movies like The Paper Chase, which depict law students buried in their studies with little chance to cut loose and have fun. However, law school can be an amazing time to have fun and socialize (when law students are not dealing with a pandemic, of course). Such social connections can be extremely helpful to law students in their future careers, in some cases, more helpful than some of the information they learn in law school classes. ...

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April 21, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Bearer-Friend Receives Fulbright Award To Research Poll Taxes In The United Kingdom

George Washington Law School Press Release, Professor Bearer-Friend Receives Fulbright Award:

Bearer-Friend (2021)Jeremy Bearer-Friend, Associate Professor of Law, has been named the recipient of a Fulbright Award to the United Kingdom, where he will research poll taxes at the National Library of Scotland in the spring of 2022.

Professor Bearer-Friend’s research will draw from the National Library of Scotland's unique collection to enrich the transnational understanding of tax filing as a forum for political expression and the use of capitation in tax policy. He will explore the anti-poll tax movement, which transformed UK tax policy and is partially credited with the end of the former Prime Minister’s Margaret Thatcher government, a key example of how tax filing shapes taxpayers' relationship to the state and to each other.

“One of the joys of being a law professor is that I get to write scholarship that not only describes what the law is or has been, but also what the law should be,” said Professor Bearer- Friend. “Adding a comparative law perspective to my work will be invaluable for developing new tax ideas and new tax policy proposals.”

Professor Bearer-Friend joined GW Law after serving as Acting Assistant Professor of Tax Law at New York University. His prior scholarship on fiscal citizenship and tax filing has examined the use of tax forms for voter-registration as well as the omission of race and ethnicity from tax data collection and tax data analysis. Earlier this year, his proposal to disaggregate tax data by race and ethnicity was included in President Joe Biden’s Executive Order on Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government, issued on the first day of the Biden presidency.

Prior to academia, Professor Bearer-Friend was Tax Counsel to Senator Elizabeth Warren, leading the Senator’s work on a wide range of tax matters. He remains actively engaged with public policy and regularly provides tax law guidance to journalists, think tanks, presidential campaigns, and congressional staff, and is currently serving a three-year term on the editorial board of The Tax Lawyer, a peer-reviewed tax law journal published by the ABA Tax Section.

April 21, 2021 in Legal Education, Tax | Permalink

Kentucky Law Journal Call For Papers: The Racial Wealth Gap

Call for Papers: Kentucky Law Journal Symposium: The Racial Wealth Gap:

Kentucky Law (2021)The Kentucky Law Journal is pleased to invite proposals for its annual symposium, which will be held in the Fall of 2021.  The KLJ symposium is entitled The Racial Wealth Gap, and will focus on the legal and historical factors that have contributed to the current state of the wealth disparity in the United States that falls largely along racial lines.  This disparity has been increasingly the focus of academic and policy research, and this Symposium aims to bring together practitioners, policy researchers, and scholars to explore this issue.  In particular, the KLJ encourages submissions that consider tax law, property law, and other legal systems that have created and reinforced the conditions that lead to White families having median wealth of approximately $188,000, while Black families have median wealth of only 15% of that amount, or approximately $24,000.  In addition to exploring the evolution of the problem, the KLJ especially encourages submissions that explore possible solutions or proposals that would ameliorate the disparity.

The KLJ expects to host this symposium in person in beautiful Lexington, Kentucky, on October 22, 2021 (date subject to change).

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April 21, 2021 in Conferences, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Conferences, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

CBS: Affirmative Action And The Diversity Dilemma

CBS, Affirmative Action and the Diversity Dilemma:

Affirmative action policies were created to increase the representation of women and people of color in the workforce and on college campuses. But how affirmative action goals are implemented has been challenged in courts and public opinion since the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was signed into law.

Gail Heriot, a law professor at the University of San Diego and a commissioner on the U.S. Commission for Civil Rights, is a vocal opponent of affirmative action programs. “What concerns people is preferential treatment based on race, which is just another way of saying discrimination based on race. You can’t prefer one race without discriminating against another race,” she said.

Ibram X. Kendi, director of the Boston University Center of Antiracist Research, told CBS News, “If we as a nation are serious about creating equity and justice, we have to institute programs that have been proven to create more equity in our schools, in our colleges, and our workplaces.” He added, “Affirmative action programs in education have been demonstrated to increase diversity and increase access specifically for underrepresented groups.”

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April 20, 2021 in Legal Education | Permalink

Message From Pepperdine's President: A Prayer for Healing

Pepperdine Cross

A Prayer for Healing:

I am writing this morning to acknowledge that many in our Pepperdine community are anxious and hurting this week as the Chauvin trial concludes and the memories of the horrific death of George Floyd flood our hearts, souls, and minds.

There is much work to be done in our country to heal our past, build hope for our future, and achieve racial reconciliation and equality for all: just as our founding documents promise. As a Christian university, Pepperdine is committed to this divine aspiration and is compelled to act. So, we are calling our community of believers together for a time of prayer—prayer for unity and healing, prayer for peace and progress. We desperately need God to heal our land. God promises us that:

. . . if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. (2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV)

As I reflect upon the condition of our country, I remain convinced that the only lasting solution to heal our deep wounds will come from God and the transformation of hearts that only God can bring. God is our only hope.

Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone. (Psalm 33:22 NLT)

My vision for Pepperdine continues to be the building of a resilient and faith-filled community of belonging. Realizing this vision requires us to do two things in this moment: to pray and to act. What are these acts?

He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8 ESV)

Please join me on Wednesday, April 21, at 10 AM for a time of community prayer and healing hosted by the Office of the Chaplain.

April 20, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

IAALS Guides To Data-Driven Legal Education And Law Firm Hiring

IAALS Releases New Tools to Cut through Bias in Legal Hiring and Improve Legal Education Outcomes:

IAALSTwo first-of-their-kind guides provide data-driven pathways for law firms and law schools to implement Foundations-based practices and foster a more diverse profession.

IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System, released two new guides—an Instructional Design Guide and a Hiring Guide—which detail innovative ways for legal educators and legal employers to implement data-driven, outcomes-based standards underpinned by IAALS’ Foundations for Practice research. The guides, which stem from a survey of 24,000 lawyers and working sessions with 36 employers and 4 law schools, provide law schools with a path to train better lawyers and employers a path to hire and retain the best lawyers.

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April 20, 2021 in Legal Education | Permalink

Anatomy Of Temple Business School Rankings Fraud

Following up on my previous posts (links below):  Poets & Quants, Anatomy Of A Business School Rankings Fraud:

Temple University (2018)The beginning of the end occurred at an early morning dean’s meeting on Jan. 9 of 2018. At the tense session, several administrators at Temple University’s Fox School of Business read aloud a Poets&Quants article that cast doubt on the school’s number one ranking for its online MBA program in U.S. News.

Every person gathered for the meeting expressed concern that Fox’s No. 1 ranking had been based on an inaccurate submission of data to U.S. NewsPoets&Quants skepticism led everyone in the group to fear that the school’s years-long efforts to game the ranking by routinely submitting false data would soon explode into a crisis.

Everyone, that is, except Dean M. Moshe Porat. Ambitious and strong-willed, Porat seemed undisturbed by his colleagues’ concern. He had been dean of the school for nearly 22 years, ruling over it with iron-clad control as if it were his personal fiefdom. In truth, Porat was as much a presence at the university as anyone, the second-longest-tenured dean in Fox School’s history. Including his days as a doctoral student at Temple in the late 1970s, the insurance professor and dean had been at Temple University for parts of five decades.

A CHAMPAIGN TOAST AND AN EMAIL BLAST TO DONORS TO TRUMPET A FRAUDULENLY GAINED NO. 1 RANKING
After the meeting, in fact, he was scheduled to give a champagne toast at a reception to announce the No. 1 ranking, the fourth consecutive time Fox’s online MBA had won top honors from U.S. News. But Fox deans and administrators urged him not to mention the ranking since it appeared to be based in part on false and inaccurate data.

Porat abruptly dismissed their worries. He would do his toast, anyway, and also instruct his marketing staff to send out an email to donors trumpeting the news of the school’s No. 1 ranking. Early the next morning, however, he would ask one of the school’s statistics professors to calculate where the school’s rank would have been if the school had not intentionally misled U.S. News about the number of new students enrolled in the online MBA without a standardized test score, a key component of the rankings’ methodology.

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April 20, 2021 in Legal Ed News, Legal Ed Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink

Pittsburgh Tax Review Call For Papers: Teaching Tax

Pittsburgh Tax Review Call For Papers: Teaching Tax Law:

Pitt Tax Review (2020)In the second issue of its 19th volume, the Pittsburgh Tax Review will publish a series of contributions addressing the teaching of tax law. The aim of this special issue is to collect in one place the insights of leading tax teachers as a service for all those who are interested in and devoted to educating current law students and future tax lawyers. The Pittsburgh Tax Review has already secured the participation of five distinguished scholar/teachers: Alice Abreu (Temple University Beasley School of Law), Samuel Donaldson (Georgia State University College of Law), Heather Field (UC Hastings College of Law), Deborah Geier (Cleveland State University Cleveland-Marshall College of Law), and Katherine Pratt (Loyola Law School, Los Angeles).

The Pittsburgh Tax Review invites proposals from others for one to two additional contributions to be included in this special issue. Proposals for a contribution of between 8,000 and 10,000 words are welcome from all who teach tax law.

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April 20, 2021 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Teaching | Permalink