College Board: Helping Students or Hungry for Money?
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I want to protest College Board.
I want to, but I can’t. I could, but realistically, if I want to go to college or have any sort of career, I can’t. College Board, the organization that prepares and administers exams to students on an international scale, has a powerful grip on the testing industry.
Which, yes, we need tests. There needs to be some way to measure student success and award college credit. That’s not my issue with College Board. My issue is the expenses associated with the nonprofit organization. The SAT, an exam infamous for its length and the stress it causes, contains an outrageous amount of fees.
Want to take the SAT? Don’t worry, it’s only $46. Well, without the essay. If you want to take the essay, then the new total is going to be $60. That’s excluding other fees as well. Need to register by phone? That’ll be another $15. Register late? $29. Put on a wait list and end up taking the test? $49. Want to see what questions you missed? Another $18. Better start saving now, because we haven’t even discussed their Advanced Placement (AP) courses yet.
AP courses are the best way for students to earn college credit. Scratch that; AP exams are the best way for students to earn college credit. Receive a 3 or higher on any AP exam and most universities will provide credit for that course. Luckily, we live in a county able to pay for our fees. However, students outside of Hillsborough County aren’t as lucky. Students living in a school district that doesn’t pay for their AP exams have to pay $94 for each exam, with many students taking several exams each year. Sure, there is a waiver that you may apply for, but that only covers $32, leaving $62 to be paid. Have an AP exam the same time as another exam? Don’t worry, this kind company who cares about your success understands. Just pay a $45 late testing fee for each exam and you’ll be just fine.
The mistake often made is assuming that all of this money goes back into making the test, which would be fine, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. According to Academia.org, the previous president of College Board, Gaston Caperton, earned $445,095 for his salary while receiving over 1.1 million dollars as a bonus. The current CEO, David Coleman (considered the “architect” of Common Core) earned a total of $732,192 in 2013. Why does a nonprofit give its executives such a large salary? Why College Board executives use hard working high school students to become wealthy is beyond me.
Now, imagine a life where you protested College Board. No, seriously, imagine it. What would you do? You wouldn’t be able to receive AP credit. Forget about the SAT. Going to a good university is simply out of the question. Like it or not, if you’re a student, College Board owns you and your future.
So, like I said. I want to protest college board. But I can’t.
Hayle Short is a junior and managing editor for the print newspaper. Outside of journalism, she is a member of the swim team and president of the National...