|And now for something completely different*|
During this time however I read Nick James' 'Brief History of Critique in Legal Education' - before I knew that legal education was even a thing. Now that I know a little more about legal education, Nick's paper continues to inform my thinking. It is a useful reminder to me that despite the monolithic appearance of the law and the appearance of solidity of the term 'the profession', that they are subject to change. As Nick's paper makes clear also, Australian legal education has been characterised by shifts between the practical and the academic, culminating in the ascendancy of the professional legal academic.
The degree remains subject to judicial oversight through the Law Admissions Consultative Committee ('LACC'). Its structure, moreover, must conform with the so-called Priestley 11, the 11 core subjects considered to represent the cohesive body of discipline knowledge requisite for legal practice.
Since the Priestleys were mandated in 1992 there have been a number of seismic shifts that have generated debate about their utility and relevance. There are greater numbers of law students not going on to practice; increasing globalisation of legal practice; increasing specialisation of practitioners; and growing emphasis on legal skills and soft skills rather than doctrinal content alone. LACC is presently considering whether to do a small adjustment to the Priestleys, but the question I'm interested in pursuing here is possibility of a Priestley 12 - the inclusion of statutory interpretation.