- Associated Press - Wednesday, December 7, 2016

DARTMOUTH, Mass. (AP) - University of Massachusetts School of Law officials say the state’s first public law school has reached a major milestone with full accreditation by the American Bar Association.

The announcement means that the 6-year-old Dartmouth school, which has experienced growing pains, meets or exceeds all ABA quality standards. The school earned provisional accreditation in 2012.

UMass system president Marty Meehan says the announcement means the school can better focus on its mission of social justice, public service and helping society’s most vulnerable.

The school was approved in2010 by the state Board of Higher Education, which accepted the Southern New England School of Law’s offer to donate its campus and assets.

Proponents said the state needed a less expensive alternative to private law schools

Opponents said it would cost too much money.

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