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1978 Newsl. 1 (1978)

handle is hein.aals/aalsnews1978 and id is 1 raw text is: 




President's Message

                  Substantial progress can be reported in the continuing saga of the proposed ABA fees.
             At its February 1978 meeting, the AALS Executive Committee made a positive proposal to the
             Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar that the ABA bear the
             costs of the deliberative process in accreditation review and the schools being reinspected
             bear the direct cost of reinspection and the presentation of data. A uniform reinspection
             fee, assessed against all schools being reinspected, fixed by the Council to recover the
             average of the appropriately allocable costs was preferred to a direct reimbursement system
             because of accounting difficulties. Personnel costs of the ABA Consultant and staff are
             part of the deliberative costs to be borne by the ABA. The AALS Executive Commitee also
             concluded that there was no objection in principle to the ABA charging a subscription ser-
             vice fee to those schools who choose to receive the many valuable statistical reports from
             the ABA. The subscription service fee would be designed to reimburse the ABA for collecting
             and distributing the statistical data. We understand that the ABA does not plan to pursue
             further an annual accreditation fee as a condition of continued approval. The leaders of
             the ABA Council concurred in the approach taken. This proposed solution was presented at
             the Dean's Workshop by ABA Council Chairman Dick Julin and me and the comments received were
             supportive. The ABA Council subsequently approved the proposal in principle. Dean Julin
             has scheduled the adoption of the formal minute or resolution for the Council's June meet-
             ing. This formal statement will set forth the principles being used and the specific ap-
             plication of those principles in allocating the various items of cost. The purpose is to
             state the ABA Council decision in sufficient detail so as to reduce the possibility of
             any future misunderstanding. We have offered to participate in preparing that statement.

                  The present system of accreditation of law schools by the ABA is acceptable to the
              law schools as it currently functions and as it seems to be evolving. However, before
              long I believe that external forces will probably lead legal educators to consider and
              probably to support the creation of a joint commission for accrediting law schools in
              which the AALS and the ABA and perhaps the Conference of Chief Justices, National Conference
              of Bar Examiners and other representatives of the public interest will participate. The
              AALS should be prepared to take a leading responsibility in the formulation of such a joint
              commission when the occasion arises.

                   Most law schools report that stabilization of enrollments and faculties - steady state
              - has resulted in a general toughening of the tenure and promotion process. The recent
              move to extend the age of retirement contributes further to this pattern. As pressures
              increase to avoid overexpansion and over tenuring, law faculties will experience greater
              tensions regarding the tenure process. During the past few years many law schools have
              adopted or revised statements of their procedures and criteria for making tenure recom-
              mendations, which form the bases for the expectations of the young faculty. Those that
              have not may be well advised to do so. A statement of tenure procedures and criteria in
              as much detail and clarity as feasible will help assure those that are being considered for
              tenure that they will be fairly treated. As the law schools have added many women and
              minority teachers to the faculties in the past few years, these teachers see the changed
              tenure decision situation, while applicable also to their untenured colleagues, as having
              special impact on them. This is an added reason why the procedures and criteria should be
              made as fair and clear as feasible.


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