The letters that colleges should send to applicants

This is the time of year when high school students in the US await anxiously the results of the college applications. Since I work in a university and have had two children go through the college application process, I am well aware of the anxiety that it produces in young people as they wonder if they will get into the college of their choice and what failure to do so might say about them.
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Should religious colleges not be accredited?

Our university is currently going through the very last stages of renewing its accreditation as an institution of higher learning. It happens every ten years and is a big deal. We have to show the accrediting body that we are meeting our mission of providing a quality education to our students and have the resources to do so, so that our degrees actually mean something. The process requires a lot of work for the university because we have to collect all the evidence to support our case.
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Bad news for public schools

A new report says that for the first time in 50 years, a majority of public school students come from families who are eligible for free and reduced-price lunches. As Kevin Drum points out, those who quality for free lunch (44%) have family incomes of less than $31,000, while for the 7% who get reduced-price lunches the cut-off is $44,000.
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Why is this the worst college in America?

People love to rank things, which explains why listsicles are so popular as clickbait. All such rankings are dependent on the measures used to score them and so tend to be quite idiosyncratic. I try to avoid them in general but being in education I was intrigued by an article that claimed that Shimer College was the worst college in America. I had never heard of this college at all and so was curious as to what it was and why it earned this dubious title.
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Trying their best to keep Ohio’s students ignorant

The new Common Core standards for K-12 education has become the latest battleground for people who are trying to hold back the tide of good education because of fears that it will not support religious dogma, anti-science ideology, and conservative political history. In Ohio, A Republican state legislator Andy Thompson is introducing legislation to do this.
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Problems of the American university

One problem that has received plenty of attention is the astronomical rise in the cost of higher education that is either preventing some from thinking of college at all or resulting in them graduating with crippling debt that strongly inhibits their career choices and lives. A graduate with large student loans is more likely to be tempted by a soul-killing but high-paying job than one who is free and clear. The rise in college costs has far outstripped inflation.
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Stop slandering the millennial generation

Matt Bors has an outstanding cartoon where he takes to task those who dump on today’s younger generation as whiny, needy, lazy, self-absorbed, narcissistic and tech-immersed, who demand instant and constant gratification. Very often this is blamed on indulgent parents who refuse to let their children grow up but hover them protectively for far too long. Here is the first panel of his cartoon where he takes to task this lazy and shallow form of journalism that manufactures trends and stereotypes out of nothing, [Read more…]