Interim dean at Charlotte School of Law hopeful it will stay open

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The interim dean of the Charlotte School of Law told Channel 9 he hopes to turn the school into a nonprofit to keep it open.

The American Bar Association put CSL on probation last fall and in December, the Department of Education pulled federal loans for students attending the school.

Without a way to pay for their education, many students transferred. This time last year, there were more than 700 students at CSL. Right now, there are 220 students enrolled.

Interim Dean Scott Broyles has taught there since the school opened and two days into his new position, he says he's committed to keeping it open.

Broyles said problems started for CSL when the market dropped and instead of creating smaller classes, the school lowered its standards and accepted unqualified students.

"Not only me but a number of faculty members said we are not on the right path, we've got to stop this," he said.

Broyles said administrators promised more resources to help students.
Still, the bar-passage rate, which had been as high as 87 percent in 2010, dropped to 45 percent in 2016.

Channel 9 talked to attorneys representing hundreds of former students who are filing lawsuits.

Despite the challenges and poor status with the American Bar Association, Broyles said the school is on the right path.

It's submitted two plans to be considered by the ABA.

The "Teach-out Plan" would allow the school to partner with another school to help current students earn degrees. Under this plan, CSL would close.

The "Reliable Plan" would ensure the school maintain higher admissions standards, and trade its for-profit status to nonprofit status and remain open.

“Not only have we put in place the corrections, we're dead serious on them,” Broyles said.

The school is waiting to hear from the ABA and the Department of Education about whether either plan will be approved. There's no timeline for a response.

For now, the school's admissions program is on hold.