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Ryerson law school proposal approved by federation

|Written By Tim Wilbur
Ryerson law school proposal approved by federation
Anver Saloojee, the dean of record for Ryerson University’s law school proposal, says they are hoping to launch in 2019 or 2020.

The Federation of Law Societies of Canada has granted preliminary approval to Ryerson University’s proposed new law school.

According to Anver Saloojee, the dean of record for Ryerson University’s law school proposal, the university is still optimistic they can launch in 2019 but a more realistic date is likely 2020.

“It is a big day for the university. It is a major accomplishment for the province of Ontario, for the greater GTA, for the Ryerson community,” says Saloojee, who is also assistant vice president international for the university.

Saloojee says that Ryerson’s president Mohamed Lachemi will now be “engaging” with the province early in the new year, since the proposed program must be now be approved by the Ontario Minister of Colleges and Universities under the Degree Granting Act.

In its approval, the FLSC identified three concerns that it says it will monitor in subsequent reviews. Those concerns were related to Ryerson’s faculty complement, program funding resources and physical resources available to faculty and staff.

Saloojee says none of the concerns outlined in the report, published yesterday, were a surprise.

“In the iterative process we had with them they indicated those were concerns they raised. We tried to address them as best we could at that time. Those are concerns that we will definitely take into consideration as we go forward.”

Ryerson says its proposed law school will offer graduates a new kind of program, one that is more focused on innovation than existing law schools. This claim has caused some consternation for existing law school deans, who have said they are continuing to evolve and offer innovative curricula.

“This is a law school that we believe is both in keeping with the tradition of other law schools but also extends pieces of innovation and equity and diversity and access to justice into the very core of what we are doing in the law school,” says Saloojee. “While we believe that we are within the prouder traditions of what other law schools are doing, we also believe that this will be a unique law school and it will differentiate us.”

The proposal contemplates a first year class of 150 students, with similar numbers admitted each year. Ryerson has said it does not intend to increase enrollments in the near future.

  • Keep Churning Out the Law Degrees in Bulk

    Ron Charlesworth
    No surprise the proposal sailed through the Federation - just like with TWU although the provincial law societies and their members had a different view. The Federation also is pretty easy in terms of letting offshore school churn our Canadian degrees. Maybe I should start a law school in my garage, charge big buck$ for tuition and get the Federation to approve it???
  • Keep Churning Out More Law Degrees

    Ron
    The Federation of Law Societies seems to approve any law school that seeks approval. Trinity Western's proposed law school sailed through their approval process. But the Provincial Law Societies and their members were not so happy about it. They also let offshore law schools have it easy, too. Maybe I should start a law school in my garage, charge big bucks for tuition and submit it for approval??
  • Too Much Too Soon?

    R. Molot
    Not to be a "Debbie Downer" (is that politically correct?) on the new school, but I seem to recall complaints from dozens of students (if not hundreds) from existing law schools that there are insufficient articling positions available to ensure that future lawyers receive proper training in practice, rather than the theory behind it. While there is little question that the population is growing - at present, that doesn't appear to translate to a need for further law school positions in order to cover the province from a lack of lawyers. Regardless, articling is a necessary component of any lawyers training and the existing lack of jobs does not look to be improving any time soon. I have a hard time understanding why expansion is necessary right now? In the future maybe ---but at the moment - there are going to be a great many people spending a great deal of money with very little to show for it at the end of their degree.
  • Why?

    Underemployed Lawyer
    Ryerson was tasked with administering the LPP and providing a solution to the articling crisis. Now, they want to contribute to the crisis directly. The last thing anyone needs is another law school. There are not enough aritlcing and junior law jobs, why is everyone pretending this isnt the case?