One law school faces a stark future

Can a law school perform a queen sacrifice?  I haven’t been blogging about the law school crisis, although I’ve been tracking it for years (!) at FTTE.  So let me remedy that with the sad story of the Appalachian School of Law.

Appalachian School of Law_Sign_in_FrontASL faculty numbers have fallen to a stark level:

[F]aculty numbers have dropped from 14 full-time professors in the Spring of 2014 to eight in the fall to seven this semester, that’s down 50%.

Why?  Enrollment has plummeted as the law school crisis continued:

At the height of enrollment, there were approximately 150 students in a graduating class at ASL…

[T]he incoming class for 2014 … was approximately 45…

This has led to income reductions: “Revenue has dropped from $9 million in 2010 to $6.9 million in 2013.”

How is Appalachian Law responding?  One move explores affiliating with another institution, Emory & Henry College, about 55 miles away.  Another involves lowering LSAT demands from incoming students.

I don’t think they can cut more faculty and still offer basic classes, which means a queen sacrifice might not be in the cards.  As with Lyndon State, cutting back on academic offerings weakens a school’s ability to compete.

There are other examples of law schools being crunched.  Time permitting, I’ll blog about them.

(thanks to Shel for the pointer)


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