PLEASE NOTE: Publication for public comment is not, and shall not be construed as, a recommendation or approval by the Board of Trustees of the materials published.
Proposed amendments to Guidelines 12.1 and 12.2, Guidelines for Accredited Law School Rules (Guidelines), re Criteria for Determining Compliance with Accredited Law School Rule 4.160(M) (Minimum, Cumulative Bar Examination Pass Rate) and Action Taken When a Law School is in Noncompliance with Guideline 12.1.
Since January 1, 2013, Rule 4.160(M) of the Accredited Law School Rules requires that all California Accredited Law Schools (CALS) “must maintain a minimum, cumulative bar examination pass rate as determined and used by the Committee [of Bar Examiners] in the evaluation of the qualitative soundness a law school’s program of legal education.”
To quantify the new standard, the Committee of Bar Examiners (Committee) amended the Guidelines for Accredited Law School Rules by adopting two new Guidelines: Guidelines 12.1 and 12.2. Soon after Guidelines 12.1 and 12.2 were adopted, however, there was concern that the methodology described in Guideline 12.1 was unclear and ambiguous as to which administrations of the California Bar Examination should be used and which eligible graduates should be counted to calculate an accurate pass rate. As a result, the Committee deferred implementing Guidelines 12.1 and 12.2 to address the concerns.
Alternative proposals to amend the Guidelines were drafted and the Committee determined that it should conduct a “Pilot” minimum, cumulative bar examination pass rate (MPR) reporting program that would require each CALS to calculate and report its pass rate using two different methodologies. The results of the Pilot Program were reviewed and after further discussion, the Committee adopted amendments to Guidelines 12.1. and 12.2. in principle, subject to a public comment period.
The proposed amendments to Guideline 12.1 and Guideline 12.2 clarify the methodology that should be used by the CALS to make the calculations necessary to determine compliance with the MPR requirements.
Attachment A contains the proposed amendments to Guideline 12.1 and Guideline 12.2.
Committee of Bar Examiners
Dec. 31, 2014
The State Bar of California
180 Howard St.
San Francisco, CA 94105