Charlotte School Of Law's Struggles

Jan 25, 2017

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 25, 2017

How did Charlotte School of Law wind up in its shaky position? Can they figure out a way to stay afloat? Mike Collins and guests, including a School of Law student and a former professor, look at the pressures facing North Carolina's largest law school.

A classroom at Charlotte School of Law, 2013. (File photo)
Credit Julie Rose / WFAE

Charlotte School of Law tried to get back into business this week with the delayed start of its spring semester. Students and professors returned under continued questions about the school's future.

Its footing has been unsteady since November, when the American Bar Association placed the school on probation over concerns about admissions, including applicants "who do not appear capable" of graduating and entering the bar.

Then the other shoe dropped in December with the Department of Education cut off federal aid to the for-profit school. alleging it misrepresented students' chances of passing the bar, among other things. It was the first time the federal government had ever taken such a step against an accredited law school.

On top of that, there have been lawsuits filed by students and faculty firings.

The school argues it has been treated unfairly by Washington and is hoping for a more favorable approach from the new Trump administration.

A school spokesperson declined Charlotte Talks' invitation to appear on the program because of litigation against the school. "We strongly disagree with the allegations in that litigation and we will address them in the proper forum," spokesperson Victoria Taylor said in an e-mail.

These troubles are taking place as law schools, in general, face pressures, including declining enrollment, uncertain job prospects and big student loan debts.

How did Charlotte School of Law end up in its current state? Can the school weather the storm?

GUESTS

Lisa Worf, assistant news director, WFAE (@LisaWFAE)

Margaret Kocaj, third-year student at Charlotte School of Law

Brian Clarke, assistant professor of business law, Western Carolina University; former Charlotte School of Law professor

Kyle McEntee, executive director and co-founder, Law School Transparency (@kpmcentee)

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