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California’s Unaccredited Law Schools Forced to Report High Dropout Rates
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Summary: To protect potential and current students, the California State Bar will require unaccredited law schools to report their attrition rates beginning in June.

Starting in June, all of California’s 22 unaccredited law schools will have to reveal their ridiculously high dropout rates, The Los Angeles Times reports. On Friday, State Bar trustees voted to require those schools to publish the rates for the last five years, and before students can pay their tuition, they must sign documentation that they were shown those rates.


According to the L.A. Times, these schools collectively have a dropout rate of 85%. Generally, they do not require LSAT scores or even a college degree. These easy admission standards make them an attractive option for working professionals, but the lack of standards do not give potential students an accurate assessment of their legal aptitude. Many students drop out because they don’t have time to study or just don’t get it. Among students who do graduate from these unaccredited schools, only about one in five pass the bar.

It’s noted, however, that these unaccredited schools are much cheaper than their accredited counterparts. For instance, a year’s tuition could be as low as $3,000, compared to the average accredited tuition price of $42,000.

Kyle McEntee of Law School Transparency praised the trustees decision, because many alumni of these unaccredited schools told the press that they were unaware so few students finished their degrees.

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“The schools already have this information and sharing it [more widely] will protect the consumers and the public,” McEntee said.

Before the ruling, unaccredited schools reported their attrition rates to the State Bar, but the information was not published. Now the rates will be required to be reviewed and signed by students and will be featured on the schools’ websites.

Additionally, State Senator Marty Block has introduced a bill that would require these schools to publish the undergraduate grade point averages and LSAT scores of their students, something accredited schools already do. He wants to amend his bill to add alumni job placement information as well.

California is one of the few states that allows unaccredited law schools to operate.

The complete list of unaccredited law schools in California:

  1. Abraham Lincoln University School of Law
  2. American Heritage University
  3. American Institute of Law
  4. American International School of Law
  5. California Desert Trial Academy College of Law
  6. California School of Law
  7. California Southern Law School
  8. California Southern University School of Law
  9. Central California University School of Law
  10. Concord Law School of Kaplan University
  11. Irvine University College of Law
  12. Larry H. Layton School of Law
  13. McMillan Academy of Law
  14. Northwestern California University School of Law
  15. Oak Brook College of Law and Government Policy
  16. Pacific West College of Law
  17. Peoples College of Law
  18. Pinnacles School of Law
  19. St. Francis School of Law
  20. Taft Law School
  21. University of Silicon Valley Law School
  22. Western Sierra Law School

Source: The Los Angeles Times

Source: The California Bar website

Photo courtesy: NYU


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