Students at Harvard, Columbia, and Georgetown Law School are demanding their schools postpone exams because they say they were traumatized by grand jury decisions made in Ferguson, Mo., and New York that failed to indict white police officers who killed black men.
“This is more than a personal emergency. This is a national emergency,” Harvard Law School students wrote in a letter to the school’s administration over the weekend. In a similar letter, Georgetown Law School students wrote: “We, students of color, cannot breathe. … We charge you to acknowledge that Black Lives Matter.”
Most schools have policies that allow students who are observing religious holidays, have suffered a death in the family, or have a medical emergency to reschedule their exams. Yet the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases could signify the first time schools have been asked to move exams because of a grand jury’s decisions. It’s also forcing law schools to evaluate individually whether students are traumatized enough that their exam grades would suffer should they be asked to press forward.