Posts Tagged ‘colleges and universities’

Higher education roundup

  • New York Times tackles a story of lopsided Title IX process [Michael Powell, NYT on Keith Mumphery Michigan State case] Federal court spanks Johnson & Wales in Rhode Island over kangaroo court [KC Johnson, Minding the Campus] U.S. Department of Justice “has filed a statement of interest in a lawsuit challenging the University of Michigan’s controversial speech code policies” [Nikita Vladimirov, Campus Reform]
  • “Judges,” he told the crowd, “cannot be intimidated,” and “Lawsuits are won and lost in the courtrooms, not in the streets.” Gail Heriot gives Stanley Mosk his due;
  • Suing for faculty positions: “While I find it regrettable that university faculties are so politicized that good candidates like Teresa Manning get rejected, I think it would be even worse to have some law or regulation against discrimination based on politics.” [George Leef]
  • “As many as one in four students at some elite U.S. colleges are now classified as disabled, largely because of mental-health issues such as depression or anxiety, entitling them to a widening array of special accommodations like longer time to take exams” [Douglas Belkin, WSJ]
  • Diversity follies in STEM [Heather Mac Donald, City Journal] University of Michigan employs 93 full-time diversity staffers [Mark Perry]
  • “Six Ideas to De-Politicize the American Campus” [Martin Center]

Frequent flyer education complainants

“According to the Education Department, 41 percent of the 16,720 complaints filed in the 2016 fiscal year came from three people,” one of whom has filed thousands of similar complaints over the web accessibility of schools’ websites. Now the department intends to wrest back some control of its civil rights docket, which sounds like a long overdue move. [Erica L. Green, New York Times]

An elevator joke and an academic career

Recycling a joke that was already old when I was a teenager, academic conference-goer on elevator calls out “Ladies’ lingerie” in reference to a floor stop. Then begins the acrimonious process in which he must defend his career against the complaint filed by a women’s and gender studies professor who was present and took offense. [Ruth Marcus, syndicated/Houston Chronicle] More: Katherine Mangan, Chronicle of Higher Education.

Penn State cracks down on student outdoors clubs

“Penn State recently decreed that three student-led outdoor adventure groups—the hiking club, the cave exploration club, and the scuba club—would have to disband due to safety liability concerns, even though none of the long-running clubs had ever reported a problem.” In the case of hiking, a “key issue for administrators was that the Outing Club frequently visit locations with poor cell phone coverage.” [Lenore Skenazy and Robby Soave, Reason]

Campus climate roundup

  • Applicants for faculty positions at UC San Diego must file written statement detailing “past efforts, as well as future plans to advance diversity, equity and inclusion,” and are warned that lip service isn’t enough [Stephen Bainbridge]
  • CUNY law dean: disruptors shouted down Josh Blackman for only eight minutes or so, nothing contrary to university rules in that [Robby Soave, earlier] “Hecklers of Campus Speakers: Easy Answers and Hard Questions” [Erica Goldberg] “Is Free Speech Becoming the Next Scare-Quote Domain?” [Paul Horwitz]
  • On a happier note, a Festschrift and tribute essay collection for the inimitable and unstoppable Richard Epstein [University of Chicago Law School]
  • “Readers may find it remarkable that these students expected the other people in the room to applaud and validate them for derailing the event.” [Robby Soave on Duke protest of alumni event] How to end a building occupation: “The phone calls [from NYU] advised parents that students who interfered with campus functions could [lose] financial aid or housing.” [Kyle Smith, NRO] “Some Pundits Say There’s No Campus Free Speech ‘Crisis.’ Here’s Why They’re Wrong” [Soave]
  • “The people in that room all agreed that I had committed sexual harassment by showing my class this film” [Soave; Massachusetts College of Art & Design]
  • A sociologist’s view: if my field is typical, postmodernism and intersectionalism haven’t taken over the academy [Nicholas Wolfinger]

Playing politics with pensions

A mini-roundup: “How State Pension Funds — and 401k Managers — Prioritize Politics over Returns” [Ike Brannon, Cato/Forbes.com, more; related, Eric V. Schlecht, Economics 21] “The California state teacher retirement system open letter to Apple about ‘smartphone addiction’ provides another point in favor of giving these workers individual accounts with a private provider.” [Caleb Brown on Twitter] “Those shares belong to the college savers, not him”: Illinois treasurer uses 529 funds to push Facebook, other firms on political issues [Cole Lauterbach, Illinois News Network]

And as to scale and solvency: “A $76,000 Monthly Pension: Why States and Cities Are Short on Cash” [Mary Williams Walsh, New York Times on strains in Oregon]; Eric Boehm, Reason.

Campus puritanism, cont’d

If the WSJ paywall kept you from reading my piece last month on Yale admissions and social justice, an unpaywalled version is now up courtesy of the Cato Institute.

Related: “Then, he asked me what my ‘exit plan’ was. He explained that there were certain safe ways to exit the building.” Later: “‘A student shouted out “F–k the law.” This comment stunned me. I replied, “F–k the law? That’s a very odd thing. You are all in law school.”‘” Josh Blackman speaks at CUNY Law School, the city-sponsored law school dedicated to one particular and controversial ideology, that of “public interest law.” [Blackman’s blog post; Robby Soave, Reason; William Jacobson, Legal Insurrection; Eugene Volokh (“seems like an organized attempt to keep Blackman from speaking…The protesters’ standing on the same stage as the speaker, I think, would also not be tolerated for other events”); Eric Turkewitz (“Is their training so shoddy that they don’t grasp there are differences of opinion on how a law or the constitution is read?…Why are they afraid of words?”)]

Also related: Keith Whittington of Princeton speaks at Cato on his new book, “Speak Freely: Why Universities Must Defend Free Speech” [Ilya Somin, Jonathan Adler]

Higher education roundup

  • Ruth Bader Ginsburg: “There’s been criticism of some college codes of conduct for not giving the accused person a fair opportunity to be heard, and that’s one of the basic tenets of our system, as you know, everyone deserves a fair hearing.” Jeffrey Rosen: “Are some of those criticisms of the college codes valid?” Ginsburg: “Do I think they are? Yes.” [Atlantic] Related: Stuart Taylor Jr. & KC Johnson, Real Clear Politics; Linda LeFauve & Stuart Taylor Jr. on the long-deflated yet still influential Lisak campus rape study;
  • “Forcing Students to Apply to College Is a Bad Idea” [George Leef, Martin Center, earlier]
  • “Congress Should Deregulate Private Universities, Not Regulate Them More” [John McGinnis, Liberty and Law on bill to restrain colleges from applying discipline for membership in a fraternity or sorority]
  • “What’s more, any program proposed by a Maryland university must be reviewed by the monitor to ensure it will not harm the historically black schools.” [Danielle Douglas-Gabriel, Washington Post]
  • 88-year-old NYU psychology professor denounced to bias cops for curricular choices on gender politics, not using students’ preferred pronouns [Dean Balsamini/New York Post, Alex Domb, Washington Square News on case of Prof. Edgar Coons] Ideological state of the law schools not good [Mark Pulliam/Misrule of Law, and thanks for mention]
  • “No one should be entitled, though, to a particular mix of holiday celebrations.” [Eugene Volokh on Loyola (Chicago) controversy]