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Phi Beta Cons

The Right take on higher education.

Law Schools and Diversity



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From The Chronicle

A section of the American Bar Association has suffered another setback in its efforts to retain the authority to accredit the nation’s law schools while pushing them to pursue diversity. The general counsel of the U.S. Department of Education has announced that it will appeal a committee’s decision to let the accreditor’s diversity requirements stand.

At issue is a policy, approved by the accreditor last August, that requires law schools to demonstrate concrete steps they are taking to achieve a diverse student body, faculty, and staff.

Since then, the Education Department has raised concerns about whether the requirement would force law schools to break laws in four states that ban the use of affirmative action. And some staff members of the department’s National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity have questioned whether the standards would be applied uniformly.

Here, particularly, is high-mindedness, from William Rakes of the ABA:

The department’s “own regulations for recognizing accrediting agencies do not speak to diversity standards,” he said, “and, therefore, cannot justify the requirement of removing diversity standards from an accrediting agency’s oversight of institutions of higher education.”
The Department of Education does not “speak to diversity standards,” therefore it has no business questioning the sainted ABA. What insolence!


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