I often tell my kids that I want them to look at colleges and universities that are SAT optional. There is a political message I want sent – If we are going to spend all of that money, we may as well support a college that shares our values. I want my kids to be more than a number. I want the school to meet them, to interview them, to see the spark for life and learning in their eyes. If I am going into debt, it had better be worth it.
That said, as a Temple alumna, I have been researching Temple University’s confusing messages. Last summer they announced that they are going SAT optional. Yesterday Diane Ravitch reported that Teach for America and KIPP received the largest chunk of the anti-public school Walton Foundation money this year… and Temple has now announced their partnership with KIPP charter schools. They’ve taken Gates money, too. Temple seems to be selling their soul.
Clearly parents of conscience need to dig deeper before we spend our hard earned dollars for college. It is not enough to find a school that is test optional. Perhaps Fair Test can create a list of schools of conscience – schools that do not sleep with the enemy, schools that get the big picture and boldly lead in ethics, schools that consider being omitted from U.S. News & Word Report a selling point. Ravitch reports here that Hampshire College was blacklisted for going test optional (I wonder if they also ticked off some other "ed reform" power players).
Hampshire College, bravo. We will be visiting soon. No U.S. News & Word Report?
Best PR ever.