By Tracey, Intern & Nattakan Chomputhong (Ann), Legal Trainer
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Bridges Across Borders South East Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE), BABSEACLE Foundation, in conjunction with the South East Asia Clinical Legal Education Association (SEACLEA) , will host a ten day Asia Clinical Legal Education (CLE) Summer School Training Workshop, in Chiang Mai, Thailand 5-14 June, 2015. For several years, BABSEACLE has successfully conducted CLE Summer School training workshops to help develop and strengthen the Clinical Legal Education (CLE) programs of the Myanmar (2014) and Vietnam (2012) university law faculties. BABSEACLE will be holding another national CLE Summer School in Myanmar in May 2015.
Based upon the incredible success of this strategy nationally, BABSEACLE will apply this same strategy to the region and will be organizing the first Regional Asia CLE Summer School.
Law teacher representatives from the region, who have demonstrated a commitment to being engaged in assisting the development and strengthening of CLE programs, at their universities, may apply to participate. The application procedure requires candidates to show a leadership ability of, as well as their strong commitment to CLE programs and methods. The Asia CLE Summer School is expected to involve about 60 participants, including 10 international/ regional CLE experts, as trainers, and aims to reach participants, from across Asia, including many of BABSEACLE’s current university partners. They will all come to share their CLE experiences, and to learn from each other.
The first CLE Summer School, organized at Can Tho University, Vietnam, saw participants from different Vietnamese law schools come together to learn and share their practical teaching techniques. The BABSEACLE Vietnam team, and a team of seven international CLE experts/clinicians from the USA, Belarus, Australia and England, also attended the event. Modeled on actual university semesters, Summer School participants gained an understanding of how a university accredited CLE course is taught.
In 2014, collaborating with BABSEACLE, Taunggyi University, in Myanmar, hosted the Inaugural National Myanmar CLE Summer School. More than fifty Myanmar nationals participated in this Summer School, representing all eighteen Myanmar university law departments. Seven international and regional CLE experts and pro-bono lawyers conducted the trainings. They taught participants how to develop CLE programs and apply CLE teaching methodologies. Participants were exposed to a variety of CLE-related programs and curricula that modernize and streamline existing teaching practices. The Summer School included demonstrations and interactive trainings, on a variety of CLE programs, in which many Myanmar University law departments expressed a strong interest in developing including CLE Mock Trial and Moot Courts, Community Legal Education and Street Law, In-House Consultation, and Externships.
The upcoming ten day Asia CLE Summer School will focus on teaching various types of CLE program models to the participants. Law lecturers will learn about different prototype, skeletal and adaptable CLE lessons, and how to test revise and teach them, so that they may be able to apply them, and other teaching methods and aids, into their own law classes.
Specific CLE models focused on will include Externships, In-House Legal Advice Clinics, Community Teaching, and CLE Moot Court/Mock Trial, Externships.
The Asia CLE Summer School will aim to achieve the following objectives:
- Provide participants with an understanding of how CLE courses and programs are taught, evaluated, and monitored, within an university setting;
- Provide participants with substantive knowledge and skills, on how to design, teach, evaluate, and monitor a CLE course and how to monitor and evaluate the impact of these courses;
- Develop within the participants the value of, and need for, university to include CLE courses and programs that apply interactive and reflective CLE methods;
- Further strengthen the network of CLE programs, by having regional university law faculties share their experiences, and continue to learn from each other, and apply such knowledge in their respective classrooms;
- Provide draft standardized CLE model lessons for revision and to use in university law faculty teachings;
- Provide a venues where participants will learn, share experiences, and teach representatives from other CLE programs and courses, worldwide;
- Provide participants with the knowledge on how to conduct and evaluate of CLE Moot Court/Mock Trial simulations, in order to develop a practical understanding of legal procedures.
The Summer School will include: an overview of a number of regionally applicable CLE program models; legal ethics; professional responsibility; pro bono; client-based lawyering; interviewing skills; client intake; listening skills; the development of an accredited CLE program for legal curricula; and monitoring and evaluation a CLE program. Sessions will be delivered by regional and international Clinical Legal Education experts, pro bono lawyers and researchers. All sessions will use interactive, participatory and learner-based methodologies. Regional CLE Summer School Trainers will include experienced regional and international CLE law teachers, clinicians and lawyers, who have a strong familiarity with accredited CLE programs and with training others.
As a result of this CLE Summer School, participants will be able to:
- Better understand and appreciate the range of CLE programs, in the region and internationally;
- Identify applicable models for their own institutions;
- Incorporate applicable models into their existing or future CLE programs;·
- Develop and strengthen the network of CLE programs in the region and internationally;
- Explain the organisation, format and content of CLE courses and programs;
- Explain what CLE, access to justice, ethics and orientation skills are needed for effective CLE programs and courses;
- Demonstrate the knowledge and skills needed for teaching various CLE models in their respective law departments.
The Summer School organisers believe that it is essential maximize the number representatives from Asia and other international jurisdictions. The best way for the stakeholders to learn how CLE and pro bono work s, is to share experiences and to learn from others. By interacting with experienced clinicians from established and newly established CLE programs, pro bono lawyers and regional lecturers learn how to develop and implement accredited CLE courses, at the university level. The organisers want to facilitate this exchange, as a means to ‘bridge borders’, throughout Asia and internationally. Hopefully, these relationships will become an empowering initiative, and will result in an abundance of information sharing and partnership building between Asian and international universities, and will promote the growth of local, regional and international pro bono law firms.
*DEADLINE FOR REGISTRATION – Please send us the completed application to [email protected] by Wednesday 20 May 2015