The proposed federal university ranking system is kaput. A while back, we wrote a bit about the federal university ranking system that the Obama administration had intentions of implementing. On the pages of “The Yale Daily News,” our Founder, Bev Taylor, was asked about these very rankings and had this to say: “Even if the Department of Education were to produce accurate ratings, it is unlikely that they would have a significant effect on the college choices of certain groups of students. ‘There’s always going to be students and parents who look at the prestige of a university, and not the cost,’ Taylor said. ‘And so if a school is going to be more highly rated because it has a lower sticker price, it’s not going to matter to this group of applicants.’ Taylor added that applicants not focused on cost effectiveness will probably default to using the U.S. News and World Report college rankings as a resource, since the U.S. News rankings are currently the most widely read.”
We also on the pages of this blog essentially suggested that a federal college ranking system would be worthless, since it would not be widely embraced by a sizable portion of the population, such as those for whom the differences in cost for various colleges is not the issue but rather it’s about fit or selectivity, etc. Anyhow, “The Los Angeles Times” now reports that this Obama administration proposal has been scrapped. As reported by Larry Gordon for “The Los Angeles Times” in a piece entitled “College ratings system proposed by Obama is scrapped,” “Nearly two years ago, President Obama proposed a federal system to rate the nation’s colleges and universities, one that would provide families with an objective and unified tool to compare schools and for taxpayers to determine whether the massive investments in scholarships and other government spending on higher education are worthwhile. The idea, however, was met with protests and concerns from college leaders who contended that it was misconceived and could unfairly pit schools against each other. After repeated delays and many consultations with skeptical college leaders, the ratings system was recently scrapped.”
Amen to that. Apparently, the Obama administration received resistance from colleges across America. It wasn’t because Republicans resisted that the administration opted to scrap the proposal entirely. It’s largely believed that the Obama administration simply had higher priorities — including in education — then to wage this particular uphill battle. Congratulations to squashing yet another potential competitor, “US News & World Report,” the federal government!