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Student rejected by 13 schools case may go to Supreme Court

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Replies to: Student rejected by 13 schools case may go to Supreme Court

  • thumper1thumper1 73320 replies3190 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 76,510 Senior Member
    This is a private school. They are under NO obligation to keep students on their roles. If this family was that difficult...why didn’t the school simply say “we are sorry, but we don’t feel we can meet your needs” and ask this student to leave.

    Private schools can do that.
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 578 replies8 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 586 Member
    While you could semantically argue that this “may” go to USSC, as that’s the final appeal step, the odds are about one in a billion that they would take this judicially trivial case.

    Facts of the case have been argued and appealed and none of the decisions show the slightest acceptance of the claims being made. There’s no issue of major legal importance, there are not conflicting decisions from different circuit courts, etc.

    Makes me wonder exactly how this clickbait-titled story got onto CNN.
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  • thumper1thumper1 73320 replies3190 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 76,510 Senior Member
    @doschicos it IS as easy as it sounds...and it happens all the time. Private schools are under no obligation to keep a student. None at all.
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  • lookingforwardlookingforward 32704 replies350 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 33,054 Senior Member
    I'd encourage all to read ucb's 2nd link in post #1, the appeals court findings.
    "There is no evidence, and therefore no genuine dispute, that any breach of the Settlement Agreement was material; and there is no evidence, and therefore no genuine dispute, that Sidwell took adverse actions against plaintiffs in retaliation for their engagement in protected activities."

    Interesting: "Respondent agrees, in good faith, to recalculate or recompute with explanation the following grades by September 30, 2013; however, Respondent offers no guarantees as to any changes in results." I assume this means without justification. They did change one semester grade from A- to A, when, supposedly, the teacher realized the lowest semester grade hadn't been dropped for all of the students in that class.

    Is money the common thread in the various suits? They made money in the earlier suit and don't want to pay Sidwell's legal costs for this one?
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  • maya54maya54 2052 replies87 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 2,139 Senior Member
    edited June 13
    “Renewed sympathy for Sidwell employees with each passing day. Now students want to litigate their grades and comments? Ugh.”

    You understand that she essentially won on these issues at the administrative level with Sidwell having to pay 50K, regrade some of her classes, and not retaliate. While this was a settlement, the amount in this case would be highly unusual unless there was some pretty decent evidence in support of her claims. The issue in THIS case was whether Sidwell retaliated causing the student to lose out on admissions. The lower courts found that there wasn’t adequate evidence of this and even if there were she wasn’t damaged.
    edited June 13
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  • privatebankerprivatebanker 5017 replies64 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 5,081 Senior Member
    But perhaps the case will be heard. Two of the justices being Georgetown Prep alums would probably enjoy giving a jab to their Sidwell rivals.
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  • QuantMechQuantMech 7909 replies35 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 7,944 Senior Member
    I recommend reading the legal documents, to which ucbalumnus posted the link, in post #1. The circumstances are more complicated than they seem on the surface, and in my view more favorable to complainant.
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  • skieuropeskieurope 37915 replies6565 discussionsSuper Moderator Posts: 44,480 Super Moderator
    I recommend reading the legal documents, to which ucbalumnus posted the link
    I did.
    The circumstances are more complicated than they seem on the surface,
    As is often the case
    in my view more favorable to complainant.
    Well, that's what her legal team is supposed to do. Regardless, I came away with an opposite view.

    Regardless, this case is DOA. No way will SCOTUS hear this. In my opinion, of course.
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  • QuantMechQuantMech 7909 replies35 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 7,944 Senior Member
    In the legal documents linked by ucbalumnus, pages 22 and 23 seem problematic to me. The Math II instructor was directed by the headmaster to preserve the work product and grade record of the student after the school year ended, but instead shredded the work, destroyed the original grade book, and preserved copies of only some parts of the grade book. One significant test in particular had a grade assigned despite the student's statement that she had never taken the test. There is a question of the school policy about situations where a student-athlete misses classes and/or tests due to athletic competitions. In this case, I surmise that the student was missing some tests, quizzes, or other activities because she was on a travel team. Differential treatment of make-up work by different athletes would not be right.

    Material on page 16 seems problematic. It is alleged that the headmaster "charged" at the father, and made a statement about wanting the family "gone, gone, gone from the School." This happened, or it didn't. The school apparently does not dispute it, however.

    There is also an allegation of non-compliance with the Settlement agreement, mentioned on page 18. There is a claim that the transcript was not corrected in a timely manner (ahead of distribution to the colleges), when it was agreed by the school that it should be corrected.

    Finally, it is interesting that the student went from C+/C in Math II to A/A- in Calculus, which is a rare pattern in my experience.

    I would not discriminate against the student for pursuing the legal complaint.
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  • Nocreativity1Nocreativity1 1048 replies49 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,097 Senior Member
    ^Great catch @Theloniusmonk!
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 76523 replies665 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 77,188 Senior Member
    edited June 14
    QuantMech wrote:
    Finally, it is interesting that the student went from C+/C in Math II to A/A- in Calculus, which is a rare pattern in my experience.

    For what it is worth, it looks like Sidwell Friends math courses have the sequence Math I -> Math II as an honors accelerated version of geometry -> algebra 2 -> precalculus. After Math II, students could go on to Math III -> Math IV, or calculus 1 -> calculus 2. From the catalog description, calculus 1 and 2 look like a two year calculus AB and BC sequence, while Math III and IV look like an honors sequence (but the curriculum is organized differently, so that the student is ready for the BC test only at the end of Math IV). Note: they are not explicitly AP courses, since Sidwell Friends is one of those schools that disdains AP courses, but they apparently do realize that many of their students will want to take advanced placement in math in college.

    https://www.sidwell.edu/uploaded/public_site/academics/upper_school/Curriculum_Guides/Curriculum_Guide_2019-20_-_Google_Docs.pdf
    edited June 14
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  • OhiBroOhiBro 308 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 314 Member
    Plaintiff appears to be just another racial rabble rouser. 😴

    This whole thing seems like a big clown show. She blames the school for not submitting SAT scores? She blames the school for advocating for a HBCU rather than non-HBCU when they were only advocating because she sent the HBCU application late?

    Is it unreasonable to expect a person that believes she is Ivy material to be able to figure out the basics of how college applications work?
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  • CrayonShinChanCrayonShinChan 47 replies3 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 50 Junior Member
    I was rejected to 16 schools this year and you don’t see me complaining. Live life and move one, they just don’t want you that’s all 🙄🙄
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