Yale Law School is again No. 1. Its reaction? A yawn?

Yale Law School was once again ranked as the No. 1 law school in the nation by the recently released and highly anticipated U.S. News & World Report rankings.

And, boy, did Yale Law ever play that up.

No. 1!!! Again!!! Woo hoo!!! Take that Harvard!!!

Actually, it didn’t.

At least from what we could tell.

We could find no press release from the school regarding the news, for instance. On the Yale Law School website, there’s no mention that the school is the best law school in the nation, according to the rankings.

Go to the news page and one of the lead stories is: “The Wikimedia/Yale Law School Initiative on Intermediaries and Information (WIII) at Yale Law School has released a comprehensive report synthesizing key insights from intermediary liability and online speech and expression experts in Europe and the United States.”

Obviously, we kept reading …

What gives? Isn’t the U.S. News & World Report ranking supposed to be the most important and definitive sign of a law school’s status? Isn’t that why schools go to such great lengths to bolster their positions?

Take the University of Florida, Frederic G. Levin College of Law, which rose 10 spots and is now ranked 31st. Check out its website. On the front page, there’s this: “UF Law Makes History.”

How did it make history? Did a graduate get on the U.S. Supreme Court?

Um, not quite. It made history by doing this:

“University of Florida Levin College of Law has reached its highest-ever ranking in the latest U.S. News & World Report law school rankings, placing 31st among all law schools, 12th among public law schools, and 1st in the state of Florida.”

Yep, it’s a big deal for the school. Indeed, Dean Laura Rosenbury noted in the article: “We remain laser-focused on raising our national profile.”

Take the University of North Carolina School of Law, which rose 11 spots to reach 34th place. It also had a news release on its website, giving itself a big pat on the back.

“We recognize that rankings are important not just to the school and alumni but to prospective students as well,” says Andy Hessick, professor of law and associate dean for strategy. “Moving forward, we plan to build on the momentum of this year, continue to look at the data and identify additional areas where we need to improve.”

Associate dean for strategy????

The University of Tulsa College of Law made note on its website that it cracked the top 100. It climbed 14 places and is now 87th. Yale is worried, no doubt.

It’s not just Yale Law that seems to ignore the rankings. Stanford Law School, which finished second, has no mention of the ranking on its website. Then again, it did finish second.

Instead, the top news story is this:

“Federal administrative agencies across the United States employ machine learning and artificial intelligence to make decisions. But what happens when agencies can’t explain how those algorithms work? Students in a policy lab at Stanford, Administering by Algorithm: Artificial Intelligence in the Regulatory State, are exploring this question and what it means for the future when law and computers intersect.”

Obviously, we kept reading …

Harvard Law School? It was the same story. No mention of the ranking could be found. But it finished way down at third.

But some top schools did make mention of the ranking. Seventh-ranked University of Pennsylvania Law School noted how it was No. 1 for new grad employment, with more than 99 percent employed. Take that Yale.

We reached out to Yale to see if we could have been missing something, but the school didn’t reply.

So we can only assume the reasoning: When you are the best, you don’t need affirmation or reason to publicize it.

Or maybe Yale didn’t hear the news …

 

 

 

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