Tag: Admissions Standards

Is College Merely Helping Those Who Need Help Least?

THE YEARS THAT MATTER MOST How College Makes or Breaks Us By Paul Tough I am — to capitulate fully to the nomenclature — a “first gen,” meaning a first-generation college graduate. For me, as for many first gens, a college degree was transformative. If you’d met me when I was 10 — pulling copper […]

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How a Military Prep School Helped Army Improve in Football

WEST POINT, N.Y. — Kelvin Hopkins Jr., the youngest of three children raised by a single parent, was a mama’s boy who was hesitant to move far from home when he graduated high school in Charlotte, N.C. He did not know much about the military life, either, and his test scores were “not ideal.” All […]

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End Legacy College Admissions

For nearly a century, many American college and university admissions officers have given preferential treatment to the children of alumni. The policies originated in the 1920s, coinciding with an influx of Jewish and Catholic applicants to the country’s top schools. They continue today, placing a thumb on the scale in favor of students who already […]

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Cheating, Inc.: How Writing Papers for American College Students Has Become a Lucrative Profession Overseas

By Farah Stockman and Carlos Mureithi Sept. 7, 2019 Tuition was due. The rent was, too. So Mary Mbugua, a university student in Nyeri, Kenya, went out in search of a job. At first, she tried selling insurance policies, but that only paid on commission and she never sold one. Then she sat behind the […]

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Looming Over the College Admissions Case: Will Parents Like Felicity Huffman Get Jail?

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — With the first sentencings on the horizon for a group of wealthy parents accused of paying big sums to get their children into prestigious colleges by cheating, the legal drama has come down to a simple question: Will they serve any jail time? The actress Felicity Huffman, who pleaded guilty to paying […]

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Should a Single Test Decide a 4-Year-Old’s Educational Future?

To get into a gifted and talented elementary school program in New York City, children must ace a single, high-stakes exam — when they are 4 years old. This admissions process is now a flash point in an escalating debate over how to desegregate the nation’s largest school district. Although New York’s school district has […]

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In Crunch for College Admission, U.S.C. Tracks Applicants’ Ties to Big Donations

The emails to the dean of admissions flagged students that the athletic department had taken a special interest in — not, apparently, for their prowess on the field or in the pool. “Long time donors,” read a note about one applicant. “$3 mil to Men’s Golf-Thailand,” read another. And the notes about applicants — and […]

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When Did College Turn So Cruel?

Paul Tough’s important new book on the broken promises of higher education begins with a chapter that he succeeds in making as suspenseful as the prologue of any serial-killer novel and as heart-rending as the climax of an epic romance. It describes a high school senior who is waiting to hear if she has been […]

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Where Does Affirmative Action Leave Asian-Americans?

For the purposes of this article, Alex Chen, an 18-year-old senior at the Bronx High School of Science in New York City, is the “typical Asian student.” Alex has a 98 percent average at one of the city’s elite public high schools, scored a 1,580 on the SAT and, as far as he knows, has […]

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The Plan to Scrap New York’s Gifted Programs: 5 Takeaways

On Tuesday, a task force created by Mayor Bill de Blasio to find ways to desegregate New York City’s school system released a proposal to completely overhaul admission practices in the nation’s largest school district. The task force recommended the elimination of gifted and talented programs in the city, as well as a reconfiguration of […]

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College Board Rethinks SAT ‘Adversity Score’ After Criticism

The College Board, the company that administers the SAT exam, said on Tuesday that it would withdraw its much-debated plan to include a so-called adversity score on student test results, saying it had erred in distilling the challenges faced by college applicants to a single number. The adversity score was made up of the average […]

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Lori Loughlin Due in Court as Admissions Scandal Looms Over New School Year

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Students are moving in, syllabuses are being handed out and freshmen are getting directions to the 24-hour Starbucks. But as a new school year begins at the University of Southern California, the nation’s largest-ever admissions fraud prosecution continues to roil the campus. Close to 20 U.S.C. students are entering the fall not […]

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Desegregating N.Y. Schools Was His Top Priority. What Happened?

Soon after he took the helm of the nation’s largest school district last year, Richard A. Carranza made his top priority clear: desegregation. He sought to set himself apart from previous New York City schools chancellors and even his own boss, Mayor Bill de Blasio, by promising both frank talk about racial inequality and sweeping […]

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Colleges Are Cutting Tuition, but You May Not Pay Less

Sunshine Anderson was at Mills College’s annual welcoming ceremony in 2017 when the liberal arts college revealed its big news: It was slashing its tuition by more than a third. Elated, the history major, who is now a senior, immediately spread the word on Twitter and recalled thinking: “Oh, my God, this is going to […]

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Caught Up in the College Admissions Scandal: Stanford’s Boathouse

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. — A Stanford sailor arrived at the university’s gleaming boathouse to clean out her locker at the end of the school year. The doors would not open. “Did they change the locks again?” she said with an air of exasperation. It was a reasonable question. In March, when the sailing coach John […]

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Amid Racial Divisions, Mayor’s Plan to Scrap Elite School Exam Fails

[What you need to know to start the day: Get New York Today in your inbox.] Richard A. Carranza, the city schools chancellor, insisted last week that the plan to eliminate the entrance exam that dictates admission into Stuyvesant High School and the city’s other top public high schools was gaining traction. “There’s some real […]

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Harvard’s False Path to Wisdom

Over the past year and a half, the students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., have handled themselves with a fervor and commitment that has, most of the time, inspired the nation. One of those students was Kyle Kashuv. Despite the trauma of the shootings and a busy impromptu career as a […]

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Harvard Rescinds Admission for Parkland Student Over ‘Offensive’ Comments

MIAMI — A recent graduate of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., who became a gun rights activist in the wake of the deadly shooting that killed 17 people last year, said on Monday that Harvard College rescinded its admission offer over racist and offensive remarks he made as a 16-year-old student. The […]

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Why Can’t Everyone Get A’s?

For a generation now, school reform has meant top-down mandates for what students must be taught, enforced by high-stakes standardized tests and justified by macho rhetoric — “rigor,” “raising the bar,” “tougher standards.” Here’s a thought experiment. Suppose that next year virtually every student passed the tests. What would the reaction be from politicians, businesspeople, […]

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Telling the Story of Race in New York City’s Elite High Schools Using Old Yearbooks — Including My Own

Times Insider explains who we are and what we do, and delivers behind-the-scenes insights into how our journalism comes together. Movies about American high schools usually portray a micro-society ruled by football players, the wildly popular kings of the hallways. The cheerleaders are blond, pretty-but-bubbly ditzes; the “all-American” look is usually Anglo-Saxon, with Asian, black […]

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