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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

Prep disadvantaged kids for Ivy futures

Elite colleges should create and fund middle and high schools to educate disadvantaged students, writes Roland Fryer, a Harvard economics professor and a Manhattan Institute fellow, in a New York Times commentary.

Don't water down admissions standards by eliminating SAT/ACT scores, he writes.

Roland G. Fryer Jr.

Don't look for more subtle ways to discriminate by race. Instead, "deepen the applicant pool."

A small fraction of Ivy endowments could pay for a network of rigorous prep schools in cities with "high poverty rates and underperforming public schools," Fryer writes. He envisions some graduates would qualify for elite colleges and others for less selective but still very good schools.

As a child, Fryer "witnessed gallons of talent wasted — brilliant minds rotting in boring classrooms and precocious lives cut short because of routine violence," he writes. "In the types of private schools that my children attend, I often see teaspoons of talent perfectly nurtured."

Fryer was raised by an abusive, alcoholic father after his mother abandoned the family. He went to college on a football scholarship, but switched his focus to academics.

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