College Board trots out 'Landscape' after uproar

Friday, August 30, 2019
 | 
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

college application formThe organization that administers the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is walking back plans to give students a so-called “adversity score” but an education analyst sees a sneaky plan under way.

According to The Associated Press, the purpose of the adversity score was to provide context for a student's performance on the test and help schools identify those who have done more with less.

"The version used by about 50 institutions in a pilot program involved a formula that combined school and neighborhood factors like advanced course offerings and the crime rate to produce a single number," the AP reports.

Critics of the scoring, the news wire service reported, called it “overreach” for the College Board to score “adversity” alongside academics.

"There are plenty of problems with the plan to assign students a number," warns education policy analyst Mary Clare Amselem at The Heritage Foundation.

The very first problem? "Students wouldn't know what number they were given,” she advises. “They would be ranked on a score from 1 to 100."

According to NBC News, College Board CEO David Coleman is now touting a program called Landscape to help admissions officers but Amselem tells OneNewsNow the program would serve the same purpose as the adversity score.

Coleman said Landscape gives admissions officers “more consistent background information so they can fairly consider every student, no matter where they live and learn."

"This is more identity politics we seeing put into our college admissions process,” Amselem complains. “And it's moving us away from a merit-based college admissions system, which we should be focusing on."

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