Poor performance of Bar exam takers appalls Supreme Court justice


Associate Justice Arturo Brion is dismayed at the poor performance and awful English skills of those who took the Bar in 2015.

Brion said that the pass rates of law schools within the country should be published – adding that the data is simply ‘dismaying’ and shows only three of the 130 law schools with graduates coming in at a 70% and above passing rate.


He also said that 10 schools within the Philippines fell well below the 69% and under passing rate, many not even reaching 50%.

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Poor Performance of Bar Exam Takers Dismays SC Justice – www.philippineslifestyle.com

But Brion’s biggest disappointment is the lack of “passable” English, saying “the medium of communication in the courts and the medium in our international relations is in fact English.”

He went on to say that most Filipinos who did pass could not write proper English.


Brion told the 1,731 successful Bar exam passer who took their oath at the Philippines International Convention Center this past week.

“Thus, of the 130 participating law schools in the 2015 Bar exams, only 13 law schools or 10% can say that half of their Bar candidates passed,” Brion said.

Law schools passing rate not up to scratch

Out off the 130 law schools, 28 had a zero passing rate and another 28 law schools registered a passing rate of 10 or less. “Thus, of the 130 participating law schools, 56 or 43 percent had passing rates of 10 percent or less,” he added.

“The law school passing rates should be given the widest publication so that the public can at least be informed that enrolling in a given law school poses an 80 or 90 percent or even a 100 percent hazard of failing the Bar exams. I challenge the Court and the Legal Education Board to start now with the 2015 Bar exams,” Brion said.

Brion also noted in his speech before the group, that many of the examinees could not even write passable English.

“A reality in correction issues that we cannot close our eyes to, is the almost universal observation among Bar examiners that many examinees cannot write passable English – the medium of communication in the courts and the medium in our international relations. I was a Bar examiner myself but I also had to contend with the question – how can I give significant points, even if I am inclined to, for answers that can hardly be understood because of poor English and poor writing ability? These deficiencies rise to disastrous levels when coupled with the worst defect of all which is the lack of competence in law,” he added.

Sources say that out of the 6,605 people who took the 2015 Bar Exam, only 1,731 passed, a 26.21% passing rate.