Scripps College Joins Annapolis Group in Support of Better Information for Parents and Prospective Students

CLAREMONT, California - June 22, 2007

Scripps College joins peer institutions in the Annapolis Group in deciding to no longer complete the reputational survey used in U.S. News & World Report‘s rankings exercise, and the College will not promote its showing in the magazine’s annual listing of America’s top colleges and universities on the College web site.

Instead, Scripps will work with the Annapolis Group and other educational organizations to develop a common format that provides easily accessible, comprehensive, and quantifiable data on the web. The College will continue to provide data required by the U.S. Department of Education to U.S. News.

“For years we have known of flaws in the methodology; many of us have spoken with editors at U.S. News in an attempt to improve its approach,” said President Nancy Y. Bekavac, “but nothing can really improve a system that seeks to reduce 3,300 educational programs in American higher education to one set of numbers, and then rank them. College presidents, academic deans and deans of admission do not know enough about other institutions to make meaningful comparisons. This gives a false sense of reliability to what is a ranking system without any real validity.”

On Monday, June 18, the Annapolis Group, a coalition of approximately 120 leading national independent liberal arts colleges, released a statement that said a majority of the 80 presidents attending this week’s annual meeting expressed intent to not participate in U.S. News‘ ranking exercise. The Annapolis Group is not a legislative body, and the decision to participate in the U.S. News rankings rests with the individual institutions. A full 25% of each school’s score is based upon its reputation as viewed by other college presidents.

“Parents and prospective students should have accurate and full information about colleges, and this cannot be found in a single number,” said Bekavac. “We want to give them better information so they can make the decision about the right college for them, based on their own individual needs.”