The New York Times Asks Is Law School a Losing Game? Who Should Bear the Cost if Indeed Law School is a Losing Game?

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Jerome Kowalski

Kowalski & Associates

January, 2010


Dust off your old blue books and take this law school exam.

The provocative lengthy feature piece that appeared on the front page of the business section of The New York Times on Sunday January 9, 2010 entitled Is Law School a Losing Proposition? added substantial fuel to an already raging public debate regarding, among other things, the adequacy of disclosures made by law schools to prospective applicants, the question of whether law schools are blatantly engaged in deception, what should law school graduates’ reasonable employment expectations be, should the nation completely overhaul its system of legal education and ultimately, perhaps, most significantly, is there legal liability that should attach to those who have caused palpable significant monetary and other damages to tens of thousands law school graduates?  Clearly, none of the stakeholders is prepared to accept responsibility.  Each of the players is eager to blame others.  We have all heard the various claims:  the accurate information is available to prospective law students; all they need to do is conduct their own due diligence.  Law school graduates, as the Times reported belive that law schools bear a great deal of serious culpability.

You have all by now no doubt all read (1) The New York Times piece; (2) Professor’s Brian Tamahana’s ruminations; (3);  The Law School Transparency Project ; (4); (5) ; (6) my own observations; and (7) Professor’s Steve Harper’s recent observations in which he describes US News and World Reports an “aider and abettor” to the blatant deception of too many law schools.

Now, Dean Robert Ackerman of Wayne State Law School addresses the question with remarkable and refreshing candor.  Dean Ackerman puts it right out there: Says the Dean: “The problem is not that law school deans lie about employment data; the problem is that law schools have gone to great lengths to adapt to the criteria of U.S. News & World Report, a publication that has become the de facto arbiter of academic quality”.

The fact that a significant number of people have suffered real damages is not in dispute.

Accordingly, the question:  What, if any, are the rights and remedies of the parties?

(C) Jerome Kowalski, January 2010.  All Rights Reserved.


6 Responses

  1. […] law school classes, as we previously discussed.  Against this backdrop, the same New York Times asked but a few weeks earlier whether attending law school was a losing proposition. In all fairness, as an aside, kudos should now be extended to Albany Law School and Touro Law […]

  2. […]               When the Times ran its first expose of law school flimflam in January, I was prompted to ask, as they do in law school, “What, if any, are the rights and remedies of the parties?”  […]

  3. […] previously exposed the fact that law school education is a rigged losing game as well as the shell game many law schools engage […]

  4. […] attorneys, across the country.” After reading the entire series by David Segal – you can start here – I leave it to the reader to insert an appropriate bon mot […]

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