Elite colleges are planning to stop taking grades into account altogether in the admission process and instead rely on “a list of competencies . . . most of which can be described charitably as character traits or accurately as self-actualization gibberish“.
For instance, instead of reporting a student’s competence in math or English, the new grade-less transcript will show how well he can “exhibit moral courage in confronting unjust situations.” Of course, the definitions of moral courage and unjust situations are highly subjective, but that’s the whole point. There is no better way to bar the hoi polloi from elite colleges than to set as the price of admission the mastery by students, parents and teachers of a social-justicey jargon of the leisure classes.
It doesn’t really matter how prepared a student is to take college-level courses. All that matters is that she comes from an environment that has mastered the new pseudo-egalitarian language of exclusion.