Poor Felicity Huffman is being raked over the coals for paying a lousy $15,000 to get her daughter extra time to take the SAT.
Jared Kushner’s father paid $2.5 million to get him into Harvard — and arranged for two of his beneficiary politicians, Sens. Ted Kennedy and Frank Lautenberg, to make calls on his offspring’s behalf.
“His GPA did not warrant it, his SAT scores did not warrant it,” a former administrator at Jared’s private high school told Daniel Golden, author of the 2006 book, “The Price of Admission.” “There was no way anybody in the administrative office of the school thought he would on the merits get into Harvard.”
Welcome to the baby boom’s remaking of college admissions!
For decades, going to college was a matter of social class, not IQ, talent or merit. From 1900 to 1960, only a tiny percentage of Americans even went to college, about 2 to 5 percent until well after World War II. Adios, America: The Le... Best Price: $2.48 Buy New $6.08 (as of 03:40 EDT - Details)
It wasn’t until the ’60s that admission to college first began to be based on a universal standardized test, the Scholastic Aptitude Test. This fulfilled the dream of Harvard president James Conant, who believed that SAT-based admissions would redeem America’s promise of a classless society.
Recall that England’s law of primogeniture was one of the best things that ever happened to this country. If you are a small island nation and want to keep land from being chopped up every generation, it makes sense to mandate that entire estates be bequeathed to the first-born son. But that left a lot of smart second-, third- and fourth-born sons — not to mention daughters — out in the cold.
The talented, but screwed, Brits responded by hopping on boats, sailing across the ocean and creating America! In this country, status would be earned, not inherited.
But the meritocracy in college admissions lasted only 30 years — right up until the baby boomers had college-aged kids. Then it was over. The Worst Generation came along and decided that sending their kids to Harvard was the perfect accessory!