Whodunit!? College Edition 🕵️

CNN Newssource

CNN Newssource

College admissions scandal

Outlets erupted this week with news of a widespread American college admissions scandal. While there are still a lot of moving parts, the most significant development so far includes high profile parents and their kids. Actress Lori Loughlin, for instance, allegedly paid USC $500,000 for admissions for her two daughters.

Who's responsible here?

Though it appears that institutionscoaches who feigned recruiting college admittees to help them gain admission, and a guy named “Rick” Singer also contributed to the scandal, much of this week’s coverage focuses on the parents who paid bribes – as well as their kids, who reaped benefits from those bribes. Should the kids receive punishment?


PRO EXPULSION:

SiLive: Sickening privilege of Huffman, Loughlin and others charged in college cheating scandal (commentary)

Daily Beast: Georgetown rich kid ‘gloated’ after allegedly cheating SATs

Those who argue that the kids who benefited should receive expulsionargue that the kids must have known, and cite examples of their knowledge. (For example, they say that kids who were falsely admitted as athletes and subsequently had to pose as athletes had to know something hinkyhappened in their admissions process.) These outlets also reference that some kids gloated about beating the system.

UNSURE:

Fatherly: Don’t blame rich kids for the college admission scandal

The Mercury News: Their parents paid to cheat them into elite colleges. What happens to them now?

Those who are unsure argue that multi-hundred thousand dollar bribe negotiations and payments fall above any kid’s understanding, regardless of whether or not they felt something fishy was occurring. The above pieces claim that in one case, a kid who received fraudulent “athletic” admission arrived at campus and felt confused when people asked him about the track team.


So should the students be punished?

Each student's case should receive individual attention, if possible, as each one contains unique circumstances, making it unwise to set an all-encompassing standard. What is for sure, however, is that this scandal begs for wider, systemic questions – and answers – about what role money, race, and class should play in admissions.    

Aunt Becky, what happened??

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