Durham Uni Law School chief urges regulator to postpone SQE
The swift spread of the coronavirus COVID-19 has had significant consequences for us all.
Working remotely has gone from optional to mandatory within a few short weeks. Our workplaces are temporarily closed and the court system has been seriously impacted as well. Law students have now gone home from their universities as their professors switch from teaching in ever larger lecture theatres to Zoom.
In virtually every area of our lives, we see planned reforms paused and put on ice so that something as close to ‘business as usual’ can be maintained. A global pandemic is not the time to consider the future of the Qualifying Law Degree, but rather ensuring the existing system can be maintained through the current crisis.
The main regulator for becoming a solicitor — the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has conceded temporary changes of how assessments are conducted may be unavoidable under these extreme circumstances. An enormous amount of effort and time will be spent getting this right for the sake of students and the wider profession.
But it is now time for the SRA to go one step further and postpone its plans for the Solicitors Qualifying Exam (or SQE) — widely referred to as the “super-exam” — for at least six months. The SRA is expected to request formal approval from the LSB this summer.
It is unreasonable