Soft bigotry of low expectations; California wants to ease the bar exam so more black and latino people can become lawyers

Jul 26, 2020

For more than three decades, California has clung to one of the nation’s toughest testing standards for law school students hoping to practice law in the most populous state in the country.

But this month, the California Supreme Court, which oversees the state bar, agreed to lower the passing score for the exam, a victory for law school deans who have long hoped the change would raise the number of Black and Latino people practicing law.

After holding virtual meetings with law school graduates and deans, the state’s highest court this month permanently lowered the passing score, allowed for law school graduates to work temporarily under supervision with provisional licenses during the pandemic and permitted graduates to take the bar exam remotely in early October.

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