Saturday, July 30, 2016
By now, one would think that legal education would have recognized the professional quality and contribution of legal writing professors. However, despite acceptance at some schools, many LW professors still lack the status that they deserve. At the Best Practices for Legal Education blog (July 15, 2016), Professor Shailini George reports on the current campaign for equal citizenship:
The Legal Writing Institute (“LWI”) the Association of Legal Writing Directors (“ALWD”), and the Society of American Law Teachers (“SALT”) have formally adopted a policy statement on full citizenship for all faculty. Here is the text of the statement:
The Legal Writing Institute is committed to a policy of full citizenship for all law faculty. No justification exists for subordinating one group of law faculty to another based on the nature of the course, the subject matter, or the teaching method. All full-time law faculty should have the opportunity to achieve full citizenship at their institutions, including academic freedom, security of position, and governance rights. Those rights are necessary to ensure that law students and the legal profession benefit from the myriad perspectives and expertise that all faculty bring to the mission of legal education.
LWI launched a campaign for individual signatures which began at the conference and will continue.
A recent article also discusses the impact of the lack of full citizenship for a group of faculty who are largely female: Stars Upon Thars: Law Schools Use ABA Standard 405(c)’s Tenure Like Security of Position to Discriminate Against Female Legal Writing Faculty, 34 Law. & Ineq. 137 (2016) by Melissa Weresh from Drake Law School. This article addresses the potential for exploitation of law faculty members who hold ABA Accreditation Standard 405(c) status (“reasonably similar to tenure”) and the likelihood that such exploitation will have a disparate and discriminatory impact on a predominantly female cohort of law faculty.
You can read more here.