Law graduates who, after five takes in the Philippine Bar Examinations, were disqualified may find hope in a proposal recently lodged by Congress for the Supreme Court to allow them one more re-examination.
Through House Resolution No. 649, siblings-legislators Cagayan de Oro Rep. Rufus Rodriguez and Abante Mindanao Rep. Maximo Rodriguez Jr. seek the High Court's approval to temporarily suspend the "five-strike rule."
According to this rule, a bar candidate who fails his first Bar Exam still has two chances, but if on the third try he still flunks, he needs to go back to fourth year law school to get a refresher course in all major subjects before he can be allowed for another two takes. And if he remains unsuccessful after a total of five tries, he is disqualified forever to take such exams.
The lawmakers assert that such proposal will give fair chances to those previously disqualified examinees, and would permit them to take a shot at the new version of the Bar Exams, which is the Multiple Choice Question type.
The 2011 Bar Examinations Committee, chaired by Associate Justice Roberto Abad, has been working with law deans and colleges for the exam style of 60% MCQ and 40% essay.
Knowledge and recall, comprehension, case analysis, and law application will make up the entire examinations, according to reports. An examinee should, however, ensure to pass the MCQ so as to proceed with the essay or memorandum writing test.
The MCQ will be 200 items picked out by examiners from 300 items pooled from various topics falling under a major subject. The Essay Test may consist of answering straight questions about the law and drafting of resolution, memorandum, position paper, or opinion. Each Essay Test, the reports say, will be read and checked, and re-read and re-checked by a five-man team of examiners.