Wednesday, November 28, 2018
The Voice of San Diego website has published a report summarizing the growing challenges facing Thomas Jefferson School of Law (we reported earlier that the school had made the decision to not enroll students for its spring semester though it is unclear whether that portends deeper problems). These include only 30% of its students passing the most recent California bar exam, a shrinking student body, financial difficulties, and accreditation worries. Here's an excerpt from the Voice's story:
The school has dramatically downsized its campus and taken on far smaller incoming classes as part of its effort to prevent the loss of its national accreditation.
Thomas Jefferson School of Law has been in near-constant turmoil since taking on significant debt to build a new $90 million facility in the East Village amid the financial recession last decade.
Paying off the bonds for the upscale building during a period when consumer interest in law school precipitously dropped proved difficult, resulting in persistent financial woes.
The San Diego institution’s graduates have also struggled to pass the bar exam and secure legal jobs, generating unflattering headlines that have made it challenging to attract new students who could reverse those trends.
Last year, the bad news got worse: The American Bar Association placed Thomas Jefferson on probation and warned that a rapid overhaul was needed for the school to maintain its national accreditation.
In hopes of forestalling the loss of the ABA’s blessing, the school has in recent months drastically reduced the size of its student body and physical footprint.
Its efforts to right the ship are continuing amid a change in leadership prompted by its dean departing abruptly last month after slightly more than a year at the helm.
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Continue reading here.