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Top Ten Percent Rule

By: Lindsay Liepman
By: Lindsay Liepman

Eight years ago the Top Ten Percent rule allowed Texas Schools to automatically admit students at the head of their high school class.

Now a Texas Lawmaker is trying to repeal the rule, and some Texas A&M students are giving their support.

Almost half of Texas A&M's freshman class, were automatically admitted.

They didn't have to rely on anything but good grades to get in.

According to the Young Conservatives of Texas, this is another form of affirmative action.

"Now that affirmative action is legal again, we don't need it. It's like double affirmative action," says David Morris, Executive Director YCT.

A Texas senator has filed a bill to ban the Top Ten Percent rule, because opponents say it discriminates against students who went to competitive high schools.

But the rule has contributed to a slight increase in minority enrollment in Texas schools.

"It penalizes students who went to extremely difficult high schools and it makes admissions into college based on one criteria instead of a number like standardized tests, extra curricular activities, things like that," says Morris.

Students who didn't get in because of Top Ten Percent agree, the rule lets good students fall through gaps in the admission process.

"I just know it's very competitive and I don't think Top Ten Percent encompasses everyone who deserves to be in college," says Texas A&M Sophomore Jacqueline Bravo.

"I was in the top 11 percent and just squeezed in. I got into West Point and the Air Force Academy and had to apply here twice," says Texas A&M Junior Matthew Grumbein.

But students who got in just because they were in the top ten percent also think it's unfair.

"I think it's preventing a lot of kids who really want to come to schools like Texas A&M from coming here," says Texas A&M Senior Andy Luten.

Still, some see the top ten percent rule as a successful alternative to race based admissions.

The University of Texas has close to 70 percent of its freshman class in the Top Ten Percent.


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