Connect with us
[bsa_pro_ad_space id=12]

National Education

Actress Loughlin surrenders as admissions fallout spreads

If you like this, share it!

BOSTON — Fallout from a sweeping college admissions scandal swiftly spread Wednesday, with actress Lori Loughlin surrendering ahead of a Los Angeles court hearing and a Silicon Valley hedge fund replacing its leader.
Loughlin and fellow actress Felicit…


If you like this, share it!
Avatar

Published

on

If you like this, share it!




  • BOSTON — Fallout from a sweeping college admissions scandal swiftly spread Wednesday, with actress Lori Loughlin surrendering ahead of a Los Angeles court hearing and a Silicon Valley hedge fund replacing its leader.

    Loughlin and fellow actress Felicity Huffman headline the list of some 50 people charged in documents unveiled in Boston that describe a scheme to cheat the admissions process at eight sought-after schools. The parents bribed college coaches and other insiders to get their children into selective schools, authorities said.

    Loughlin turned herself in to the FBI on Wednesday morning and is scheduled for a court appearance in the afternoon, spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said.

    Prosecutors allege Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, paid $500,000 to have their two daughters labeled as recruits to the University of Southern California crew team, even though neither is a rower. Giannulli was released Tuesday after posting a $1 million bond.

    The scandal also ensnared movers and shakers in the corporate world. The Palo Alto, California, hedge fund Hercules Capital announced Wednesday it was replacing its leader, Manuel Henriquez, who was arrested in New York City on Tuesday and released on $500,000 bail. Shares of the hedge fund plunged 9 per cent.

    Henriquez will still hold a seat on the board and serve as an adviser, Hercules said.

    Mark Riddell — an administrator for Bradenton, Florida’s IMG Academy, which was founded by renowned tennis coach Nick Bollettieri and bills itself as the world’s largest sports academy — was suspended from his job late Tuesday after he was accused of taking college admissions tests as part of the scheme.

    Riddell didn’t return several phone calls seeking comment.

    At the centre of the scheme was admissions consultant William “Rick” Singer, founder of the Edge College & Career Network of Newport Beach, California, authorities said. Singer pleaded guilty Tuesday, and his lawyer, Donald Heller, said his client intends to co-operate fully with prosecutors and is “remorseful and contrite and wants to move on with his life.”

    Prosecutors said that parents paid Singer big money from 2011 up until just last month to bribe coaches and administrators to falsely make their children look like star athletes to boost their chances of getting accepted. The consultant also hired ringers to take college entrance exams for students and paid off insiders at testing centres to correct students’ answers.

    Some parents spent hundreds of thousands of dollars, as much as $6.5 million, to guarantee their children’s admission, officials said.

    “These parents are a catalogue of wealth and privilege,” U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling said at a news conference in Boston, where the indictments in the scandal were handed up.

    At least nine athletic coaches and 33 parents were charged. Dozens, including Huffman, the Emmy-winning star of ABC’s “Desperate Housewives,” were arrested by midday Tuesday.

    Huffman posted a $250,000 bond after an appearance in federal court in Los Angeles. Her husband, actor William H. Macy, has not been charged, though an FBI agent stated in an affidavit that he was in the room when Huffman first heard the pitch from a scam insider.

    Loughlin became famous as the wholesome Aunt Becky in the 1980s and ’90s sitcom “Full House.” She has lately become the queen of the Hallmark Channel with her holiday movies and the series “When Calls the Heart.”

    The coaches worked at schools such as Yale, Stanford, Georgetown, Wake Forest, the University of Texas, the University of Southern California and the University of California at Los Angeles.

    Stanford’s sailing coach John Vandemoer pleaded guilty Tuesday in Boston. A former Yale soccer coach had pleaded guilty before the documents went public and helped build the case against others.

    No students were charged, with authorities saying that in many cases the teenagers were unaware of what was going on. Several of the colleges involved made no mention of taking any action against the students.

    Several defendants, including Huffman, were charged with conspiracy to commit fraud, punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

    “For every student admitted through fraud, an honest and genuinely talented student was rejected,” Lelling said.

    Lelling said the investigation is continuing and authorities believe other parents were involved. The IRS is also investigating, since some parents allegedly disguised the bribes as charitable donations.

    The colleges themselves are not targets, the prosecutor said. A number of the institutions moved quickly to fire or suspend the coaches and distance their name from the scandal, portraying themselves as victims. Stanford fired the sailing coach, and USC dropped its water polo coach and an athletic administrator. UCLA suspended its soccer coach, and Wake Forest did the same with its volleyball coach.

    ___

    AP Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton in Los Angeles contributed to this report.

    ___

    This story has been updated to remove an incorrect reference to Henriquez previously working for PIMCO.

    Alanna Durkin Richer And Collin Binkley, The Associated Press



















































    If you like this, share it!
    Advertisement [bsa_pro_ad_space id=12]

    National

    Teen’s family sues school board, alleges it failed to address racist attacks

    If you like this, share it!

    The family of a black Ontario teen is suing a Toronto-area school board, alleging officials at his high school failed to properly investigate and prevent months of racist bullying and attacks by white students.
    In a statement o…


    If you like this, share it!
    Avatar

    Published

    on

    If you like this, share it!




  • The family of a black Ontario teen is suing a Toronto-area school board, alleging officials at his high school failed to properly investigate and prevent months of racist bullying and attacks by white students.

    In a statement of claim filed last week, the family says the teen, identified only as E.H., was the target of racist verbal and physical attacks as well as threats from September through last month.

    They allege the incidents were repeatedly reported to officials at his Newmarket, Ont., high school, but the complaints were not properly investigated.

    The family further alleges administrators responded by suspending the teen multiple times along with his harassers, who are not identified in the document.

    The statement of claim says that as a result of the violent bullying, E.H. suffered several injuries — including a concussion — and became anxious, fearful and at times suicidal.

    The allegations have not been tested in court and the York Region District School Board has not yet filed a statement of defence. But its director of education issued a statement denouncing racism and violence.

    “It is heartbreaking to see anti-black racism manifest itself in any form, particularly through violence. Such actions are not acceptable in our schools or communities,” Louise Sirisko said in the statement.

    “We take anti-black racism extremely seriously and put in place supports for those affected, however, this is not the experience we want for any of our students. We are sorry for the hurt this experience is causing.”

    The teen’s family alleges the board was negligent in addressing what was happening to E.H. and failed in its duty to ensure a safe environment for him. It is seeking $1 million in damages as well as the reimbursement for the costs of the legal action.

    “In spite of a safe schools policy, a zero-tolerance policy on bullying and physical aggression, and an anti-racism policy, no one at the YRDSB took action to protect E.H. In fact, YRDSB’s actions in suspending E.H., added insult to injury,” the statement of claim says.

    “Due to a combination of the continued harassment, bullying and assaults, of which YRDSB was aware, E.H’s grades and school performance began to drop. The pain, anxiety, stress, feelings of insecurity, and lack of safety at school made it difficult for E.H. to stay focused and attend school.”

    The statement of claim says the incidents began at the start of the school year, when a group of Grade 11 and 12 students hurled racist insults and threats at E.H., including telling him to “go and kill himself.”

    The document alleges the harassment was reported to school officials and both the perpetrators and E.H. were suspended.

    The following month, E.H. was suspended again for being in a fight, when in fact he was defending himself from his attackers, the document alleges. The school would not confirm whether the other students were disciplined, the family claims. The same thing happened again a few weeks later, it says.

    On several occasions, E.H.’s mother asked that he be transferred to another school, but that request was denied, the document says. Administrators also made repeated promises to keep the teen safe and look into the bullying, the claim says.

    The harassment continued in person and on social media over the next few months, it says. In February, E.H.’s harassers pushed him down the school’s main staircase, the document alleges.

    Later that month, the teen’s head was slammed into a porcelain water fountain, an attack that was recorded and distributed on social media, it alleges. There were other incidents in the following weeks that resulted in suspensions, it says.

    The statement of claim says that when E.H. returned to the school in April to pick up his belongings, he was arrested by police because someone made a false report that he had brought weapons to school.

    The teen’s mother then contacted police to report the April incidents, which led officers to charge two of the other students with assault, the statement alleges. 

    The lawsuit alleges the school should have reported the incidents to police, the students’ parents and the Children’s Aid Society.

    Paola Loriggio, The Canadian Press


    If you like this, share it!
    Continue Reading

    National

    Visa rejections frustrate efforts to bring in more international students

    If you like this, share it!

    OTTAWA — At a time when Canada is attracting more students from around the world, there are concerns qualified applicants from certain countries are getting turned away because of its visa process.
    Most students have been …


    If you like this, share it!
    Avatar

    Published

    on

    If you like this, share it!




  • OTTAWA — At a time when Canada is attracting more students from around the world, there are concerns qualified applicants from certain countries are getting turned away because of its visa process.

    Most students have been coming to Canada in recent years from India and China. Fazley Siddiq, a University of New Brunswick professor who served as dean of the business department, said visas have been a headache for applicants from countries like Pakistan and Nigeria.

    “It’s frustrating for the students, it’s frustrating for universities,” Siddiq said.

    “The security checks were so stringent that no one could make it. Or at least, in my experience, very few were given visas.”

    He added that the issue has been of particular concern in Atlantic Canada, where some universities are desperate for international students and “bend over backwards” to attract them.

    Siddiq said the situation has improved for applicants from Nigeria, but those from Pakistan have continued to see more refusals — in some years eight Pakistanis received acceptance letters from his department but none could get a visa.

    Canada wants to draw in more international students as a way to diversify classrooms and increase the economic benefits they bring, which already amount to billions of dollars each year. The economic impacts of foreign students rival Canada’s exports of auto parts, aircraft and lumber.

    Pakistan’s High Commission in Ottawa has urged federal government officials to address what its spokesman calls a “very high” visa rejection rate for the Asian country’s students.

    “Canadian universities are popular among Pakistani students, but due to visa difficulties increasing numbers of students is turning towards other countries,” Nadeem Kiani said in an email.

    “Consequently, Canadian universities are losing both high-quality students and revenue.”

    For example, Kiani pointed to numbers in government documents obtained through access-to-information law that show 2015 student permit applications from Pakistan had a success rate of about 32 per cent. The student-permit success rate for applicants from India that year was more than 68 per cent, say the data.

    Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen said the approval rate for visas for Pakistani nationals has gone up under the Liberal government.

    Hussen also said the government will soon announce an expansion to a program — known as the student direct stream — to include applicants from Pakistan. The program, which already covers applicants from China, India, the Philippines and Vietnam, is designed to speed up the processing of student visas.

    A spokesman for Hussen said all applications are assessed in a fair manner, based on the merits of the case and in accordance with Canadian law.

    “You can’t compare one country to another,” Hussen said in an interview. “Each country has its own country conditions, economic circumstances, people have different travel history.”

    The application decisions are made by visa officers. Therefore, a key to helping more students receive permits, Hussen said, is connecting the schools directly to visa offices and embassies to explain the government’s criteria.

    It’s also important for applicants to demonstrate they can support themselves financially while in Canada, he said.

    Denise Amyot, the head of Colleges and Institutes Canada, said it’s often difficult for students from emerging economies to show that they have financial means to pay for their stays. 

    More collaboration between visa offices and post-secondary institutions is also important to ensure applications are complete, she said.

    “(The visa officers) don’t have a lot of time when they examine an application, so as soon as there’s a doubt they could reject it,” Amyot said.

    “That’s we need to ensure as much as possible that all the info is there and it’s clear, and that there’s integrity to whatever information is there.”

    —With files from Teresa Wright

    Andy Blatchford, The Canadian Press


    If you like this, share it!
    Continue Reading

    may, 2019

    tue21may5:30 pm7:00 pmLiving Life to the FullCanadian Mental Health Association5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

    sat25may2:00 pm4:00 pmThe Planet is Changing, Why Aren't We?STOP the Destruction of our Planet, GO for Climate Justice with a Just Transition to a Fossil Fuel Free Future2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

    mon27may1:30 pm4:00 pmWellness Recovery Action PlanningCanadian Mental Health Association1:30 pm - 4:00 pm

    tue28may5:30 pm7:00 pmLiving Life to the FullCanadian Mental Health Association5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

    fri31may5:00 pm11:30 pmAB Sports Hall of Fame Induction BanquetInduction Banquet5:00 pm - 11:30 pm

    Trending

    X