Rescheduled Bar Examination to be Held Solely in Individual and on Paper After On-line Check Was Leaked

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Every week after making a bombshell last-minute announcement that it was canceling the upcoming on-line barrister and solicitor examination after discovering potential leaks, the Legislation Society of Ontario has rescheduled the exams, which is able to now be administered in individual in two sittings subsequent month.

Greater than 1,100 candidates have been initially set to take the web examination final week and in the course of the last week of March however will now have to jot down them on paper and in individual solely in Toronto subsequent month. The LSO pulled the plug on the web exams simply days earlier than the primary one was to happen, saying it had info that examination questions had been leaked.

It introduced in exterior investigators and now says there may be proof that third events have been concerned and former sittings of the exams, which went on-line in June 2020 as a consequence of COVID, can also have been compromised. Some candidates who wrote earlier exams are having their calls to the bar held pending the result of the investigation.

Ontario has the most important variety of licensed attorneys in any of Canada’s 9 provinces and three territories.

One candidate, a lawyer skilled in India who’s sitting for Ontario’s licensing exams, stated he had been making connections with different pupil teams on Fb and had random folks attain out to him making an attempt to promote him “authorized papers” for $1,000 that might assist him go. He stated he refused after which reported it to the LSO.

The Toronto Star reported that on-line educational dishonest is large enterprise and the leak of Ontario’s bar examination is simply the latest and visual instance.

Ocean Enbar, president of the Legislation College students Affiliation of Ontario, stated college students are typically happy they gained’t have to attend till the summer season to jot down their bar exams. He added, nevertheless, that many candidates who aren’t in or close to Toronto are involved concerning the monetary impression of the brand new dates and in-person necessities.

One other candidate, who most well-liked to not use her identify, instructed Legislation.com Worldwide that she is insulted that the LSO scheduled exams throughout Ramadan, which runs the total month of April.

“The holy month for me is deeply essential, it’s a really emotional factor to comprehend that the month will largely be targeted on research as an alternative of religion,” she stated. “I really feel they might by no means do it throughout Christmas. It simply makes me really feel like Muslim licensees are of little consequence to the LSO.” 

No point out of Ramadan was made within the preliminary announcement concerning the rescheduled examination, however in a while Monday the Legislation Society tweeted, “Candidates could request an lodging primarily based on the observance of Ramadan or any of the grounds outlined within the Human Rights Code.”

A legislation society spokesperson instructed Legislation.com Worldwide that lodging are handled on a person foundation and any candidates who wish to defer the examination can accomplish that with out penalty so long as they submit a request by Marc. 25. She reiterated that the April exams will likely be in-person and paper-based.

The Indian-trained lawyer stated he moved again to Canada and hasn’t labored for the previous few months whereas specializing in his research and that readability on the timing of the brand new exams was essential, as his spouse is becoming a member of him this week and the couple expect a child within the subsequent few weeks.

For these causes, there are a selection of petitions circulating that decision for the LSO to permit both on-line or take-home exams.

Diana Miles, chief government officer of the LSO, stated in a assertion that the group understands the brand new dates may create logistical points. However reverting to the in-person, paper examination “is the best resolution and balances the necessity for confidence within the examination course of with the wants of candidates to proceed their licensure journey.”

The LSO stated the brand new examination sittings will embrace “heightened invigilation protocols and strengthened guidelines,” together with COVID-19 protocols. It didn’t reply to requests for additional remark.

The leaks have once more raised the controversial argument that it will be greatest to do away with bar exams, that are self-study, multiple-choice, and open ebook, in Ontario all collectively.

“I nonetheless consider Ontario’s bar examinations have to be abolished—full cease,” Samantha Peters, the director of authorized initiatives and public curiosity at Black Femme Authorized and an LL.M. candidate at Queen’s College, wrote in an opinion piece within the Canadian Bar Affiliation’s journal. “They’re an pointless gatekeeping device that inadvertently retains many out of the career, significantly those that are internationally skilled and those that are low revenue, disabled, Black, Indigenous, ladies, members of the 2SLGBTQI+ group, and or members of different marginalized teams.” 

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