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Admissions scandal is not surprising at all

Students at East Los Angeles Community College react to the college admissions scandal. Authorities said the scandal centered around the owner of a for-profit Newport Beach college admissions company that wealthy parents paid to help their children cheat on college entrance exams and to falsify athletic records of students to enable them to secure admission to elite schools.

Are we so naïve as to think the wealthy don’t take advantage of questionable ways to get their kids into prestigious colleges? And why should anyone be surprised public schools in wealthier ZIP codes have a better outcome than those beyond those golden enclaves? I see this personally with my grandchildren. Two live in a prosperous, wealthy Maryland county and the public schools are fabulous. Here in Baltimore, that’s not the case.

So we act surprised when reports of the super-rich paying fortunes or engaging in unethical practices to assure their little darlings a slot in the college of their dreams (“Students file lawsuit against colleges in admissions bribery scandal,” March 14). When will Americans understand those with money and connections get a better deal? It’s been that way from for thousands of years. Study history.

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However, I fault the entire education establishment for the discrepancy and I also blame communities, parents and students for the differences in public school consequences. The kids in the prosperous ZIP codes learn to behave in school and do their homework. Sadly, here in Baltimore, we read too much news about school violence, attacks on teachers, truancy and lack of discipline. So don’t blame the problem on ZIP codes.

Regarding news of ways William “Rick” Singer gamed the system, it’s hard to believe this scandal took so long to surface. Didn’t the colleges notice something was amiss when some affluent student couldn’t live up to all their hype? The entire American education system is a disgrace and so is the desperation to attend a top-notch college. Over a century ago, diligent workers could start as a mail clerk and end up president of a corporation. Today, that’s impossible. Also, consider of all the past geniuses who succeeded without a college diploma. Unfortunately, I didn’t know how dreadfully rigged our system has become. Shame on us all!

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Rosalind Heid, Baltimore

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