Tag Archives: LPP

reblogged from Dean Sossin's Blog | Osgoode’s Approach to the “Integrated” Law School LPP

can’t exaggerate the importance of this issue.

Dean Sossin’s Blog | Osgoode’s Approach to the “Integrated” Law School LPP.

 

April 4, 2014

In November, 2013, Convocation of the Law Society of Upper Canada (LSUC) voted to approve Ryerson University and the University of Ottawa as the providers of the new, post-JD pathway to licensing, the “Law Practice Program” (LPP). Importantly, the LPP is a three year pilot project (with a possible extension of a further two years). At the same meeting of Convocation an application from Lakehead University’s new law school to deliver an “integrated practice curriculum” that would fully satisfy the new LPP requirements was unanimously approved. As a result, students graduating from Lakehead’s new three year program (its first graduating class will be in 2016) will not be required to article or take the LPP after graduation, but may move directly into the licensing process and write the licensing examinations. Subsequent to the November decisions, LSUC has indicated that it will entertain applications from other law schools wishing to offer an integrated practice curriculum that fully meets the skills and tasks competencies listed in the original Request for Proposals (RFP) for the LPP. 

In February of 2014, Osgoode’s faculty met to discuss the implications of the LPP for the J.D. program. Arising from that meeting, I have worked with a group of Osgoode faculty and senior administrators who volunteered to take a leadership role in gathering more information and broader perspectives on the issue. We hope this project, which is ongoing, will inform a broader discussion at Osgoode (and, potentially, across law schools and with the profession). We feel it important to signal that it is not the intention of Osgoode Hall Law School to make any application to the LSUC at this time. Osgoode’s final decision will have to wait for answers to the questions we raise below and until our discussion with the whole Osgoode community is complete. The considerations informing the conclusion of the working group are described briefly below.

 

1. Osgoode’s Ongoing Leadership in Experiential Learning

Osgoode has been—and continues to be—a leader in the continually evolving thinking about what constitutes a quality legal education that will enable graduates to flourish in a varied and dynamic professional environment. We have had an ongoing discussion about the importance of clinical education and experiential learning for decades. We have had two major curriculum reforms in the recent past and multiple strategic planning processes. The resulting vision we have developed of experiential learning and reflective professionalism at Osgoode seems significantly broader than the view of “tasks,” “skills,” and “competencies” reflected in the LSUC’s Pathways Report and the RFP for the LPP. For example, our understanding of the educational value of “competencies” differs from the use that is made of this concept in the requirements for an Accredited Law Degree—particularly in the context of today’s exciting, complex and pluralistic profession. The Lakehead program has been very intentionally constructed with a particular practice vision in mind, one suited to practice in Ontario’s northern communities. Osgoode’s program, by contrast, seeks to prepare students for a multiplicity of professional roles in a wide array of practice contexts.

2. Uncertainty and Ambiguity

The LPP is itself a pilot project, and we are keenly interested in whether and how well the specified regulatory objectives are met by the project, and what other effects the LPP might have on, for example, articling. We would also need to know more about the plan for evaluation of the Lakehead integrated curriculum and how the graduates of that program are received by the profession upon graduation. 

There are operational uncertainties regarding the LPP. For instance, the LSUC has not indicated how work placements are to be secured or what will happen if there are fewer placements than students. In the event of chronic shortages, questions arise about the viability of sustaining the LPP even over the short term. Serious questions also persist as to the impact of LPP placements on the ongoing availability of clinical placements, and vice-versa. Recently, law students were surprised and concerned by the way that the implementation of the LPP has significantly changed the cost of the LSUC licensing process. No doubt there will be more issues and challenges as the roll out of the LPP continues.

The environment is shifting fast and Osgoode will want to fix on a path only after serious deliberation, consultation and reflection. The LSUC has instituted a significant number of changes—possibly the most significant changes in the last half century—in a very short period of time (without, in our view, an adequate evidentiary basis, sufficient reflection, or consultation with the law schools). The possibility of other changes, including the abolition of articling and the changing nature of the job market for our graduates, also highlights the importance of having as full information as possible prior to any decision.

Osgoode is particularly concerned about the lack of information from the LSUC about what kind of reporting and monitoring regime would be required of any law school offering an “integrated practice curriculum.” The potential of increased monitoring, oversight, reporting and regulation by the LSUC raises critical issues of academic independence and integrity.

3. Cost Consequences

For Osgoode, there are potential costs to modifying our program in response to these recent and still unfolding developments. There are costs to the vision of the JD education and the program we have built (including the very direct impact on our current clinical offerings). There are costs in terms of staff, planning and expenses. For students, there are costs in terms of fees and time invested in new programs with uncertain returns, but also the cost of opportunities for broader legal education foregone. Nonetheless, Osgoode must continue with its established approach to the planning of its degree programs, one that emphasizes being responsive to changing contexts and alert to the costs and benefits associated with change.

4. Responsive Planning for a Dynamic Profession

Although we conclude at this time that the case to immediately modify our JD program is not convincing, Osgoode must approach our future plans with attention to the full scope of our context and with a full understanding of the implications for our students, legal education, and the profession. 

One way to understand the task is to deepen the concept of “practice readiness” beyond its use for the short-term task of licensing. The Osgoode JD aims to prepare students for a multiplicity of professional roles in a wide array of practice contexts by fostering analytical, communication, ethical and professional skills that will be valuable throughout careers that will see significant dynamic change.  In addition to the changes in the “Pathways” to licensing, it is clear that major shifts are underway in the profession and the market for legal services.  As such, there is little doubt that the occasion is upon us to think deeply about the future of legal education in light of such change.

To ensure that the Osgoode JD continues to ready its graduates for excellence throughout their careers, some essential tasks for Osgoode to address now include to:

                     Identify the most important social challenges and opportunities relevant to the design of our JD program, such as regulatory changes, shifts in job markets for JD graduates, changes in the structure of law firms including mergers and failures, retrenchment and expansion in US and other foreign law schools, and increased presence of foreign-trained law graduates in local markets;

                     Review and reflect on our curriculum reform efforts to re-articulate the essential values advanced by the Osgoode JD;

                     Develop a clear articulation of what is meant by “experiential learning” at Osgoode and how Osgoode’s approach relates to the LSUC’s regulatory competencies;

                     Continue Osgoode’s leadership in innovative lifelong professional education and reflect on the benefits and costs associated with new developments such as technology-enhanced learning, new approaches to pedagogy and best practices in professional training, and the comparative experience of professional training in other fields and in other jurisdictions; and

                     Connect to other law schools in Ontario and outside the jurisdiction regarding shared visions about the future of legal education and the legal profession.

By reflecting carefully in these ways on the convergence of so many major developments in our legal landscape, we will continue, in collaboration with our students and alumni, to build on Osgoode’s longstanding tradition of leadership as a public institution that offers responsive and reflective legal education.

Day* old tweets (* may be slightly optimistic)

somewhat messy looking birdONE thing about Rob Ford

[because this quote is TOO fantastic] ♥ APerry re Ford: “The first rule of white club is you do not speak abt whiteness. This is perhaps esp true in Canada” http://bit.ly/1dbFqSG 

The challenge of pictures….

[this week the LSUC released the news that Ryerson won the contract to deliver the LPP.  The OBA, involved somehow with the Ryerson efforts, announced the arrival of the somewhat controversial program with a picture that…surprised me]

what is your reaction to this,  ontario  lawyer  WOC ? photo from OBA webpage re  LPP . 2nd tier? pic.twitter.com/fEoTJ1BVaQ

cover page of OBA website - four women, at least three visible minorities, in a law library type space.  Headline underneath: Alternatives to articling.

 

Join in/Nominate/Submit

Big Berkshire Conference on the  History of  Women in  Toronto May 2014 Early Bird $$ till Jan.15 h/t MJMossman

Social Policy Assoc ‏@SocialPolicyUK CFP  Feminist Review on ‘The Politics of Austerity’: http://bit.ly/167wsmy 

LSA “2nd Half Century Junior Scholars [short] Essay Competition” http://bit.ly/Ip23sk  see the question and details on LSA website.

know a worthy candidate? “Laura Legge Award recognizes Ont  women  lawyers who exemplify  leadership ” http://bit.ly/HSt2w8   Nominate

At the Law Schools

Tuition

RT @KatieBrack: Excellent “What I learned at law school: The poor need not apply”  Osgoode  Tuition http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/facts-and-arguments/what-i-learned-at-law-school-the-poor-need-not-apply/article15443887/ dashboard/follows/ … @

1/2  Accessibility of lawschool ($$ & otherwise) = defining issue, bc of the impact it has on other critical issues. Who’s in the building?

2/2 what gets understood, demanded, built on? who will be  lawyers  lawprofs  judges in our future? What is this  profession abt?  service

Feminists

Thanks Osgoode  Feminist Collective for making/taking space in the  lawschool. Presence matters. pic.twitter.com/FdlAl6XkQN

photo of posters describing "why i am a feminist" up at the law school

 

Events you Missed

(you wish you were there): Emma Cunliffe (UBC) at York

(you may be relieved to have missed this) I become Highly Irritated at the Munk Debate:“the end of men”

@ munk debate on the end of men w/ @blberger (not obsolete – he got the tix). Already quite annoyed. http://www.munkdebates.com/ 

Maybe this poster explains my annoyance? Strangely, @Blberger does not seem to find my asides as funny as i do. pic.twitter.com/CYaBiidjZq

[during the debate]

So many refs to animal procreation: feels like popculture sociobiologists convention.  MunkDebate @blberger still doesnt think i’m funny

Rosin wants to help men, as their era of dominance ends. Paglia (con) is concerned abt feminist denigration of men & end of female glamour.

I just….cannot. Audience giggling. @blberger say not usual  Munkdebate form. So, this aint an intersectional space.

Given this  munkdebate is clearly just an intellectual jello wrestle, seems churlish to point to lack of intersectional analysis excpt class

Here @munkdebate class analysis=way to hide, not reveal, plutocrat driven rising inequality. Oh wait! Here we go It isnt gender but class.

1 i like Caitlin Moran best = proof of problem 2 Toronto room, primed on Ford, v sympathetic to poor working class men.

Now Naomi Wolf is here via tape talking about …oh, anyway. Now: but patriarchy is alive & well in (name country white ppl dont live)

Rosin is, to be fair, taking that on. It was Rudyard Griffith (moderator) who made the claim

Rosin talking abt swedish mat leave of a year. Does she know what country this is? @blberger says “we” always =US at  munkdebates

Now is the part where we reassure the men that this is all about how we love then.  bechdelfail

[post debate conclusion]

16 Nov @kootenaydreams debate not worth taking too seriously in the end, which i suppose was the point. Women – not to be taken seriously.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fresh Tweets

king/blackbirds (blackbird pie)

 

Next week at York!

Dr. Sally Engle Merry  “The Seductions of Quantification: Human Rights, Trafficking, and the Rise of Indicator Culture”. Dec2  yorku 2:30(Senate Chamber N Ross 9thfl)

Read/Learn

  • “Rethinking  Rape  Law  Reform Colloquium: Critical, conceptual & comparative perspectives” [Dec 6: program here]  RMIT Aus h/t @AsherFlynn {with Lise Gotell and Sharon Cowan!}
  • ‏@kmcneilly01:   Critical Legal Thinking have just posted a series of short pieces on Angela Davis – have a look http://criticallegalthinking.com/ 
  • @feministsatlaw: our response to @LSELaw’s recent ‘Is Rape Different?’ Debate Http://journals.kent.ac.uk/index.php/feministsatlaw/article/view/80/212 …

Revenge Porn (so called)

‏@globeandmail: Editorial: Much of Ottawa’s cyberbullying bill had nothing to do with the subject. Stop the legislative acrobatics http://tgam.ca/Dwpk 

@MichaelPlaxton: G&M op-ed on  revengeporn bill We need cultural shift abt sex & women, not just  criminal offence. http://bit.ly/1jvRNdL 

[i went to read.  Interesting! And here’s a paragraph near the end that was really helpful to me:

There is more going on. Another time I commented on how a conference involved only white male speakers. I should add that this conference took place at Goldsmiths and these kinds of “only white male” or “only but one” events happen regularly here, I suspect because of the kinds of bodies that tend to be organised under the rubric of “critical theory.” Someone replies that they thought I sounded “very 1980s,” and that they thought we had “got over” identity politics. Not only might we want to challenge the use of identity politics here as a form of political caricature, but we might want to think of this “over.” What does it mean to assume we have “got over” something? This claim participates in a genre of argumentation I call “overing.” In assuming we are over certain kinds of critique, they create the impression we are over what is being critiqued. Feminist and anti-racist critique are heard as old-fashioned, as based on identity categories that we are assumed to be over.   

 

Memoriam

In Memory of Sunila Abeysekera  SriLanka  feminist  activist IGLHRC: Int’l Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Cmsn http://bit.ly/18KKiL2 

‏@ArmineYalnizyan Doris Lessing dies aged 94 http://gu.com/p/3keed/tw  via @guardian

For Fun

Disturbing Google Searches For Feminism, Re-Imagined by Inspiring Feminists – awesome thanks @feministabulous http://bit.ly/1hLVu3C 

Cases

Calgary  mother used herbal meds facing charges 7yo son died of treatable bacterial infection http://bit.ly/1aPdRhO from @DebraParkes

Robson ‏@RobsonConLaw  Circumstantial evidence of loitering for sexwork doesn’t include skinny jeans and peacoat DOLL IN SKINNY JEANS & PEA COAT

@cearta: Mann Singh wins turban case in Geneva ( UNHRC) after losing in Strasbourg (before the ECHR) http://feedly.com/e/-oEBb0q5 

 

Resources

Films for the  Feminist  Classroom online, open access, hosted at Signs Journal Rutgers http://bit.ly/18KLtdu 

amazing resources here for lawyers/communities. neat model too. Equal Rights Trust bit.ly/18G3tJu h/t Joanna Birenbaum

#feministlawnerding for fun & solidarity

 

Melissa Castan ‏@MsCastan Some #lawnerds might enjoy Cambridge Eminent Law Scholars Archive: http://www.squire.law.cam.ac.uk/eminent_scholars/ …

@MsCastan w/ Australia’s Jane Stapleton as lone Eminent woman… A neat idea, though, the archive.

Fiona de Londras ‏@fdelond  @MsCastan ah, look at all those women….oh, hold on

@MsCastan sure listen, women + eminent = system failure. right?

Melissa Castan ‏@OsgoodeIFLS we could encourage them…

 @MsCastan let’s talk methods! not much of any kind of diversity in the list of Eminents, really. I would like to look at area of law too.

[so, Melissa Castan made an effort to call out Cambridge Law for their approach to eminence]

Melissa Castan ‏@MsCastan  @fdelond @OsgoodeIFLS perhaps @CamLibGroup or @cambridgelaw might have a look for some more Eminent Women to include in their archive.

[and i felt better, truly]

@MsCastan @fdelond i feel better about the whole thing now that there are allies out there and we can poke fun. Next: actual change!