Editor’s weekly: Pot calling the kettle black

The College of Law (CoL) must be having a laugh. The law school’s latest press release boasts that its brand new Bristol centre expects to exceed student numbers by a whopping 10 per cent.

CoL predicts it will welcome over 200 Legal Practice Course (LPC) and Graduate Diploma in Law students to its Bristol campus, which is due to open its doors in September 2010.

But interestingly when pressed about how it reached this figure and how many students have actually accepted an offer to study in its new branch CoL argued that the information was “commercially sensitive” and the numbers had been worked out by using a “very complicated equation”.

CoL’s response, however, appears a little bit feeble because when we asked BPP exactly the same questions it confirmed that around 40 students had accepted offers to study the LPC in its new Bristol branch by 12 March – the deadline set by the LPC Central Applications Board for students to accept first round offers.

This is just short of the 60 it had hoped to attract but BPP’s chief executive Peter Crisp said he expects that number to increase slightly by the time the course starts in September.

Meanwhile, the Bristol Institute of Legal Practice is understood to have received around the same number of acceptances as last year and therefore expects just over 200 LPC students to enrol at the start of the next academic year.

CoL was undoubtedly hoping we would write an upbeat story about how well it’s doing in Bristol but if it isn’t prepared to give us a detailed breakdown of student numbers then we’ll just have to tear the press release up.

Indeed, given the number of times CoL has slammed rival LPC providers for their lack of transparency it’s a bit rich for it to suddenly pull the shutters down. Indeed, it’s going to take a lot more to pull the wool over our eyes.

corinne.mcpartland@centaur .co.uk

PS – Would you like your Law Soc ball to be featured in the Summer 2010 issue of Lawyer 2B magazine? If so send us your pics (please include your university, the names of the people in the photo and date of ball). Please email all your pics by 23 April 2010 to corinne.mcpartland@centaur.co.uk