Leaders of the troubled Charleston School of Law say they may not enroll new students in the fall.
The two remaining owners of the private college issued a statement Thursday explaining that they “cannot in good faith enroll another class” when the school is spending more money than is coming in. Retired judges George Kosko and Robert Carr also said in the statement that they cannot assure students that they will be able to use federal student loans for their full three years or that the school will even be able to maintain its license and stay open during that time.
The two said a formal announcement on the school’s future would be made next week.
“We are heartbroken with this situation,” Carr and Kosko said. “It was a dream for the two of us to build an ABA-accredited law school. It was a dream to see it operate for over 12 years and educate more than 1,500 lawyers. This has been a wonderful ride, and we have always done what we thought was in the best interest of the school and the students.”
CSOL’s leaders had spent more than a year attempting to sell the school to InfiLaw System, which owns three other for-profit law schools around the country. The sale was strongly criticized by alumni and faculty, who claim InfiLaw is a diploma mill with lower academic standards. The South Carolina Commission on Higher Education came down against the acquisition last year, while the American Bar Association allowed it.
A third former owner Ed Westbrook has been trying to create a nonprofit that would instead take over the school, but no other offer has ever materialized since the Commission on Higher Education rejected Infilaw’s license in May 2014.
Carr and Kosko called the idea of a new buyer no more than “empty promises and false hopes.”