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judicial decisions and to draft statutory and constitutional provisions which vitally affect the law.
The principle of opportunity for all applies peculiarly to admission to the legal profession. The physicians may properly exclude all who do not measure up to the strictest requirements of a technical standard. If this results in practically confining the right to practise medicine to men in comfortable circumstances, the public will not complain, for the public must at all costs have highly skilled physicians. But to confine the right to practise law to one economic group would be to deny to other economic groups their just participation in the making and declaring of law. Such a restriction would properly be resented by the public.
It follows that opportunities must be given to those who are obliged to support themselves during their legal studies. If a man has completed two years, or, better still, four years, of a college course, he will do best if he attends a law school which commands substantially all of his working time. But if he has come to the point where he finds it necessary to support himself, and perhaps his family, he should not be denied admission to the public profession of the law. For such a man the afternoon or evening school is the only recourse.
But in recognizing the necessity for afternoon and evening schools we do not recognize the propriety of permitting such schools to operate with low educational standards. We should not license a badly educated man to practise law simply because he has been too poor to get a good education. On the contrary, the democratic necessity for afternoon and evening schools com pels a lifting of these schools to the highest standards which they can be expected to reach. Therefore we advocate requiring a longer course in these schools, equivalent in the number of working hours to a three years course in a full-time school.
We consider the library facilities of a law school a matter of great importance, and therefore recommend that a law school shall not be deemed competent to educate students for the bar unless it provides an adequate library available for their use.
We have referred before to the need of high moral character. This includes not only freedom from positive wrongdoing, but a strong sense of positive social obligation and a sympathetic understanding of the ethics of the profession. The rules of ethics may be taught in the class room, but the professional spirit which gives them vitality and instils a sense of social obligation is the natural outcome of personal contact with those who possess it. The intimate personal contact of the student with a member of the bar of high professional standards, which was in the first half of the last century a frequent result of the preceptorship
system, is lacking in much of our modern legal education. We look forward to the day when the organized bar, realizing its responsibilities, will provide a practical system by which students may be put in touch with those men in active practise who can best guide and inspire them.
But today the members of the bar who form the law school faculties must be the men from whom students will chiefly draw their professional inspiration. Most of our professors of law are giving themselves without stint to this service, striving to guide their students spiritually as well as intellectually. The double task, however, may be impossible if the number of teachers is too few. Consequently, we believe that a law school should have among its teachers a sufficient number giving their entire time to the school to insure actual personal acquaintance and influence with the whole student body.
We should welcome cooperation in this matter between the law schools and the practising lawyers. The burden of the duty rests upon the bar as a whole and not simply upon the law schools. The bar organizations must eventually shoulder the burden and bear it with a real sense of obligation.
In view of action already taken by The American Bar Association it seems unnecessary to discuss the propriety of admitting candidates to the bar upon a law school diploma. We, too, believe that such a system is undesirable and recommend that it shall not be permitted.
We have stated our conclusions with respect to the necessity for requiring a law school education and with respect to the standards with which all law schools should be required to comply. It remains to state the ways by which we suggest that our recommendations shall be given effect.
We have confidence in the efficacy of a publication of the facts with respect to the several law schools, so that intending students may distinguish between them. In this matter our medical brethren have shown us the way. Largely as a result of published classifications of medical schools, the percentage of students attending high-standard schools increased from 6.3 in 1904 to 80 in 1915.
The by-laws of this Section provide that the Council “shall from time to time inspect the law schools of the United States and may classify them with respect to standards which shall have been approved by the Section.” We propose that this Section and The American Bar Association shall adopt the standards which we have recommended, and that the Council on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar shall be directed to use those standards in their work of classification. If intending students are informed that The American Bar Association regards
certain schools as competent for their task and others as incompetent, they will be materially helped to make a wise choice.
The method of publicity and persuasion, by publishing classified lists of law schools, will be necessary until proper standards have been set by law in the various states. To the setting of such standards it is urgently necessary that we address ourselves. And it is here especially that we must cooperate with the state and local bar associations. We must face the fact that The American Bar Association is not, as the American Medical Association is, a representative body authorized to speak for the entire profession. It consists simply of individual lawyers who have become members. To make it effective as an association it must have all possible help from the state, county and city associations, with their knowledge of local conditions and their contact with those who can put its principles into practise. The lack of this kind of cooperation has been the great obstacle to effective action by The American Bar Association in the past. In a matter so vital as legal education we recommend that no pains be spared now to secure it to the full.
As a further means of bringing The American Bar Association in close touch with the state and local associations in this matter, we recommend the calling of a Conference on Legal Education to which each of these associations shall be invited to send delegates, so that common action may result from common counsel. We have not suggested the details of the organization of the proposed conference, thinking that these may wisely be left for decision by the meeting of The American Bar Association or by the body to whom the management of the conference may be committed.
C. RECOMMENDATIONS. The committee recommends that the Section direct its chair man to offer the following resolutions at the pending meeting of The American Bar Association:
(1) The American Bar Association is of the opinion that every candidate for admission to the bar should give evidence of graduation from a law school complying with the following standards:
(a) It shall require as a condition of admission at least two years of study in a college.
(b) It shall require its students to pursue a course of three years duration if they devote substantially all of their working time to their studies, and a longer course, equivalent in the number of working hours, if they devote only part of their working time to their studies.
(c) It shall provide an adequate library available for the use of the students.
(d) It shall have among its teachers a sufficient number giving their entire time to the school to insure actual personal acquaintance and influence with the whole student body.
(2) The American Bar Association is of the opinion that graduation from a law school should not confer the right of admission to the bar, and that every candidate should be subjected to an examination by public authority to determine his fitness.
(3) The Council on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar is directed to publish from time to time the names of those law schools which comply with the above standards and of those which do not and to make such publications available so far as possible to intending law students.
(4) The president of the Association and the Council on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar are directed to cooperate with the state and local bar associations to urge upon the duly constituted authorities of the several states the adoption of the above requirements for admission to the bar.
(5) The Council on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar is directed to call a Conference on Legal Education in the name of The American Bar Association, to which the state and local bar associations shall be invited to send delegates, for the purpose of uniting the bodies represented in an effort to create conditions favorable to the adoption of the principles above set forth.
ELIHU Root, Chairman, New York, N. Y.
OF THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF ATTORNEYS
GENERAL The Fourteenth Annual Meeting of the National Association of Attorneys-General was held at Cincinnati, Ohio, opening on Monday, August 29, at 2.00 P. M.; sessions also were held on Tuesday morning and afternoon following.
Byron S. Payne, Vice-President, of Pierre, S. D., presided in the absence of President J. Q. Smith.
John G. Price. Attorney-General of Ohio, extended a welcome, to which response was made by Samuel M. Wolfe of South Carolina.
During the sessions addresses were read as follows:
J. S. Utley of Arkansas on “ Initiative and Referendum in Arkansas.”
Ulysses S. Lesh of Indiana on “ The Attorney-General's Office and Law Enforcement."
Frank Roberson of Mississippi on “ Common Law Certiorari in Rate Litigation.”
A round table discussion on the subject of “ Open Office Associations” was participated in by Jesse W. Barrett of Missouri, Clifford L. Hilton of Minnesota, and William J. Morgan of Wisconsin. Another round table discussion on the subject of “ Federal Water Power Law” was participated in by Ransford W. Shaw of Maine, Clarence A. Davis of Nebraska, and Harry S. Bowman of New Mexico.
Attorney-General Hilton moved that a committee of three be appointed to confer with a committee from the Conference on Uniform State Laws upon the question of uniform methods of procedure in extradition. Also upon the motion of Mr. Hilton the constitution was amended by providing that when an attorneygeneral of any state is unable to attend in person any annual meeting, he may in writing appoint a member of his staff to