To Whom It May Concern:
I only learned tonight about tomorrow’s public hearing in San Francisco so have not been able to ask for time to speak. However, I would like to share some questions for the Task Force’s consideration.
- I read the recent working paper and was surprised and concerned that the words “academic freedom” do not appear in the paper. Are we to conclude that academic freedom is not a principle to be an integral part of the law school of the future? Presumably not. But I would appreciate learning the Task Force’s views on this basic principle.
- An implication of the push for diversification of law schools is that the ABA should no longer require tenure as an accreditation standard. For a century or more tenure has been considered inextricably linked to the protection of academic freedom. If the Task Force believes that tenure should no longer be part of the standards, how does it believe academic freedom can be protected?
- In light of the concern that many legal academics have about the threat to tenure and academic freedom that is part and parcel of the program being pushed by the law school “reform” or “critics” movement does the Task Force believe that the law school’s place inside independent colleges and universities plays a critical role in the promotion of the rule of law?
Thank you for your consideration of these questions.
I have written a series of blog posts on “The Future of American Law School” and would be pleased to share them with individual members of the committee. They are collected on my personal web page here: http://stephen-diamond.com/?cat=221
Stephen F. Diamond, JD, PhD
Associate Professor of Law
Santa Clara University School of Law