Many law school deans, bristling from criticism that they are replenishing their ranks with less academically qualified students as the number of law school applicants has fallen sharply, began to openly question the mechanics of the bar exam.In other words, as the lack of success of their graduates (in the shrinking market for law students) in passing the bar exam becomes apparent, law deans are blaming the test, not themselves. They remind me of car manufacturers who blame car buyers when their cars don't meet fuel mileage standards. "Don't blame us if folks are buying too many gas guzzlers," they say.
In short, the race to the bottom by some law schools to keep their doors open is coming home to roost but these whinging deans don't want the outside world to know it.
Nearly five years ago I posted my thoughts about the utility of the bar exam here, and they haven't changed. The bar exam doesn't measure who is truly competent to practice law but it does identify those who aren't. In other words, the bar exam is a measure of likely incompetency. Passing it doesn't insure that someone will be a good lawyer but if you can't pass it, you almost certainly won't.