Law School Admission Council (LSAC) Accused of Discrimination

The American Bar Association has joined disability advocates in supporting a Weston Ivy Leaguer in suing LSAC for discrimination.

A Weston Ivy League student with a learning disability — who’s maintained a 3.7 GPA — is suing the Law School Admission Council for refusing to give him sufficient time to answer complex questions.

Scott A. Schlager said that the organization failed to accommodate his “lifelong and well-documented learning disorder and cognitive disorder” and therefore violated provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act, writes Eric Convey at the Boston Business Journal.

While he was given up to 50% more time as other students to complete the paper, Schlager wants a judge to compel the Law School Admissions Council to give him twice the usual time.

His case has been backed by the American Bar Association (ABA), who sent a message to the Law School Admission Council to show its dissatisfaction with the way that the group handles requests for special accommodations by takers of the Law School Admission Test, writes Karen Sloan at the National Law Journal.

The ABA voted on a resolution to urge the council to “ensure that the exam reflects what the exam is designed to measure, and not the test taker’s disability.”

However, the Council responded by saying that the resolution overlooked many of the factors that must be taken into account to determine whether it grants “appropriate accommodations” to disabled test takers.

Council spokeswoman Wendy Margolis, said:

“In addition, [the council] believes that the ABA’s Commission and House of Delegates based their report and resolution on outdated, incomplete information that does not accurately reflect current practices and does not take into account the actual experiences of disabled test takers.”

This isn’t the first time a case like this has been put against the council. New York state resident Lisa Rousso requested accommodations for what she claimed was a cognitive disorder that resulted from a brain lesion doctors removed in 2005, and though she requested extra time and rest breaks she was refused.

In December last year she sued the council.

Her attorney, JoAnne Simon, confirmed that Roussou finalized a settlement with the council that will provide her with double the standard time for the sitting this month.

“While it was a good result for her client, she said, the settlement came only after Roussou underwent an additional neuropsychological assessment to confirm her disability.”

The council reported that about 2,000 people each year request accommodations. These are dealt on a case by case basis, and about half of them are granted in some form.

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