Sunday, April 1, 2012
CHICAGO, Apr. 1, 2012. Faced with law school faculty resistance to the "outcome measures" proposed in the July 27, 2008 committee report commissioned by the Section on Legal Education and Admission to the Bar, the ABA issued a report this morning that it has scrapped "outcome measures" in favor of "income measures." ABA spokesman Carl Spackler said, "We have spent almost four years coming to the conclusion that the only outcome that makes any difference is income. We realized that nobody complained in any significant way about legal education or the profession until the financial crisis sent shockwaves through the economy, and made pursuing a legal career a far riskier endeavor. Beginning with the matriculating class of 2013, law schools will be required to track four-year, ten-year, and twenty-year incomes of its graduates." Asked whether this constituted an irresponsible abandonment of its stewardship over the profession, Spackler responded, "Look, law school has become an extension of a liberal education. If you are flipping burgers, but making a good living and paying back your loans, we've fulfilled our obligation to you."
Robert Morse of U.S. News & Report said that the magazine was reviewing this development in connection with its highly influential rankings of American law schools. "I'll have to see how they plan to collect the data," said Morse, "but it sounds a hell of a lot more reliable than subjective faculty reputation surveys."