As the unified voice for the California legal services community, LAAC advocates on behalf of its member programs whenever possible. This sometimes includes signing on to various joint efforts, petitions, or other advocacy. LAAC is always open to hearing from its member programs and interested community members regarding the potential advocacy efforts.
If you have any questions regarding LAAC’s advocacy efforts, please contact Lorin Kline at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Academic Credit for Paid Externships
LAAC recently signed on to a petition opposing a proposed change to allow academic credit for paid externships.
On March 14-15, 2014, the American Bar Association Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar approved for Notice and Comment a revision to Accreditation Standard 305 which governs study outside the classroom. Specifically, the Council accepted the recommendation of the Standards Review Committee to eliminate 305-3, which is the provision that prohibits law schools from granting credit “for participation in a field placement program for which the student receives compensation.
The Externship Committee of the Clinical Legal Education Association prepared a petition opposing this change. If academic credit for paid externships were allowed, this incentive could potentially draw students away from nonprofit externships and into to corporate externships instead. For this reason, LAAC signed on to the petition. Read CLEA’s Comments.
The Council accepted comments to the proposed revision through April 18th and held a hearing in St. Louis, Missouri on April 25th. A transcript of the hearing can be read here.
LAAC also signed on to a letter urging Senators Feinstein and Boxer to seek judicial candidates with “professional diversity” and a background in public interest.