/ 28 August 2021

THE SUPREME Court on Friday announced that it will not issue a top 10 list for the next Bar examinations.

The Supreme Court En Banc approved the modifications only for the 2020-2021 Bar Examinations.

“The Bar Examinations are qualifying licensure examinations that test for minimum skills required of lawyers. The modifications, adopted pro hac vice by the Court En Banc, are designed to enable a more equitable approach to appraising and reporting on  Bar  Examination performance,” the high court said.

The court explained that it had to address the disparity between the two batches with the 2020 batch having more time to review while the 2021 batch had to prepare to graduate during the pandemic.

“Testing two batches of examinees that prepared under different circumstances — not to mention the vast number of combined examinees, placing an enormous demand on the examiners — compels the adoption of unique mechanisms that aim to balance these inequities,” it said.

With the unique challenges the Covid19 has brought, the Supreme Court decided to forego the traditional Top 10 list in order to encourage law schools to help all their Bar takers, not focusing on certain Bar bets.

“It is hoped that by shifting the focus away from how select individuals excel and onto a school’s collective performance, this will encourage deep-seated and wide-ranging improvements in legal education. Law schools would inspire and aspire for excellence that would uplift their entire studentry, rather than select bar bets only,” it said.

The Supreme Court will instead release a list of top-performing law schools with the most number of first-time Bar passers, each divided into different categories depending on their total first-time Bar applicants.