CLAREMONT (CBS) — A senior administrator at Claremont McKenna College has resigned after admitting to falsely inflating SAT scores to boost the school’s national ranking.
“I would say a lot of students feel hurt,” one student said. “People feel like innocence — they were the ones misled by this.”
The unnamed administrator admitted to falsifying scores since 2005 in order to boost the small college’s ranking in major national publications, such as U.S. News & World Report where the Claremont is ranked 9th nationally among liberal arts colleges.
College President Pamela Gann said in an email to the school community that a school administrator reported inaccurate SAT scores for this year’s freshman class.
“A senior administrator in the Office of Admission disclosed that he had been solely responsible for falsely report SAT statistics since 2005,” the email said in part.
Math and reading scores were reportedly inflated by 10 to 20 points each, which helped gain the school its lofty ranking.
“I think that it was for the betterment of the school that he was trying to do it in some ways,” said Claremont student Noureen Nanjee.
U.S. News & World Report stated on its website that it will not modify this year’s rankings in spite of the development.
The administrator reported to the magazine a combined median SAT score of 1410, but the school’s president said the actual median score is 1400.
“I think that ten points isn’t that big of a difference and even though that the scandal might have been big, because it was like the U.S. News, getting into the rating,” Nanjee said.
Claremont officials were alerted to the situation in early January and launched an investigation. A law firm has also been hired to further examine the situation, school officials said.