Committee of Heads of University Law Schools

Committee of Heads of University Law Schools Archive

Address at time of writing c/o Professor R W Painter, Secretary/Treasurer, CHULS, Staffordshire University Law School, Leek Road, Stoke-on-Trent St4 2DF. Ph 01782 294599. Fax 01782 294315. Email

The Committee of Heads of University Law Schools (CHULS) sees its role as representing law schools and their management to the funding councils and other established committees in the legal sector, promoting mutual respect and active co-operation between law schools regionally, nationally and internationally, considering and advising relevant bodies on the structure, development and resourcing of legal education, disseminating information and good practice concerning legal education, assisting in the promotion of good management practice in law schools and liaising with the ALT, SPTL and other bodies on matters of mutual interest.

History of the Committee

CHULS began its active life as an SPTL committee concerned with specific issues relating to law schools and law teaching in universities. Its first meeting was held under SPTL auspices at IALS on 27th September 1974, when the President of SPTL, Professor C F Parker, was appointed to the Chairmanship of CHULS. At its fourth meeting on 28th November 1975, it was agreed that CHULS should cease to be a committee of SPTL but should be constituted instead as an autonomous body, though close links with SPTL were still to be maintained. CHULS developed initially as a committee whose members represented all law schools in universities financed by the University Grants Committee which taught a law degree. Representatives of polytechnics, the Inns of Court School of Law and the College of Law were thus excluded.

In September 1984 the Committee agreed on the desirability of holding joint meetings with the Heads of Polytechnic Law Schools, who had formed their own Committee to represent institutions offering CNAA degrees carrying exemption from the academic stage of professional education. On February 11 1992 a meeting was held to discuss a merger of the two Committees. The merger finally took place on 30 November 1992, with the creation of a newly constituted CHULS consisting of an Executive Committee with powers to appoint sub-committees as required. Membership was open to all institutions currently in membership of the two earlier committees, and other institutions of higher education which were in receipt of funding from a higher education funding council and which offered their own law degrees recognised by the professional bodies as giving exemption from the academic stage of legal education were made eligible to apply.

Officers of the reconstituted Committee consisted of a Chairman, Vice-chairman, Secretary and Treasurer. In 1996 the two latter offices were amalgamated.

CHULS' activities have included gathering information on staff recruitment and student admission procedures, monitoring the impact of Law Society and CLE regulations and of new teaching courses, reporting on funding for legal research and law libraries, examination of copyright on legal materials and provision of advice to bodies such as the Lord Chancellor's Advisory Committees on Legal Education. Some of its findings have been published.

Records of the Committee

The material listed below comprises the following:

i) Agenda, minutes and papers, 1989-1992, deposited by Professor P Jackson, CHULS Secretary;
ii) Agenda, minutes and papers, 1992- 2000, deposited by Professor R W Painter, current Secretary/Treasurer;
iii) Papers deposited by Professor W L Twining, Chairman of the CHULS Working Party on Four Year Degrees, 1978-1980 and Convenor of the Working Party on Implications for Law as a Discipline of the Leverhulme Report and the Circular Letter from the Chairman of the UGC No 16/88, 1983-1984;
iv) Further correspondence and papers, 1988- 2000, deposited by Professor Painter.
v) Correspondence and papers, 1988-1990, of Professor G Zellick dating from his time as Chairman.

Revised 26/5/99


Page last updated: 20th July 2020

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