For the second year in a row, the percentage of people who successfully took the summer California bar exam fell to a historic low, with less than 47% passing, according to state statistics. Last year, only 48.6% of those who took the exam made the grade, the first time the passage rate dipped below half in nearly a decade.
California's decrease is small compared with other states'.
Oklahoma's bar passage rate fell by 11 points to 68%, and New Mexico's decreased by 12 percentage points to 72%. The bar is offered twice a year, but traditionally more people take the summer exam.
In California, nearly 8,300 law school alums took this year's July exam; about 4,700 took the...