Of course, this is merely an extension of their current approach: fee-paying schooling buys you small classes, plenty of resources, lots of pressure - all the things you need to succeed even if you lack intelligence. The fact that Oxford and Cambridge take half their students from the 7% of children who go to private schools is proof that you can buy success, not that rich people are more intelligent. Significantly, the proportion of top level degrees is much higher in the state-educated intake.
I'd advise universities to steer clear of this scheme. It will be like heroin: a quick fix of large amounts of cash in return for stuffing your classrooms overly full, but it's horribly addictive and very bad for you. The rich kids won't be welcomed by those who got there by merit, and their demands will be unbearable. Their choices will be whimsical and their application lacking. I certainly wouldn't invest in more staff and infrastructure in the expectation of a permanent income stream.
Or, thinking cynically: let's specialise in attracting the nice-but-dims. We can get Jack Wills to redesign the campus, install running Pimms in every room, reduce the intellectual content and mark much more easily. Make it the party campus… like Doonesbury's Walden:
a third-rate institution under the weight of grade inflation, slipping academic standards, and the end of tenure—issues that Trudeau has consistently revisited since the original characters graduated. Many of the second generation of Doonesbury characters are attending Walden, a venue Trudeau uses to advance his concerns about academic standards in America.
Still, things could be worse: we could be in Texas:
The holders of concealed handgun licences are set to be allowed to carry weapons into public college buildings and classrooms in Texas, after Republicans in the state senate approved the measure as part of a universities spending bill.
"Campus carry has more momentum than a runaway freight train," said Scott Lewis of Students for Concealed Carry, a nationwide group backing the measure.Rather an unfortunate analogy. Runaway freight trains kill people and cause massive damage. Just like angry, heavily-armed students and staff. Still, we'll all be a lot politer towards each other in meetings with the Vice-Chancellor.
Earlier on Monday, senators voted to allow themselves to carry concealed handguns into places the rest of the public cannot, such as churches, restaurants and sporting events.