College admissions scandal: What did the students know about ‘the side door,’ and what should happen next?


Some students actively participated in the cheating: They had test proctors give them answers to college admissions tests and even “gloated” afterward, prosecutors said.

Others knew, or should have known, something was amiss: They were asked to “be stupid” to get diagnosed with a disability, which allowed for extended time on tests. Some flew across the country to take those tests. Or they were asked to show up to college orientations for sports they didn’t play.

Sometimes, parents came up with elaborate ruses to keep their children in the dark about the cheating. They arranged fake proctors to let their children think they took a test actually being taken by a stand-in, or explained that they used old-fashioned networking instead of six-figure bribes to get them into elite universities.

No students have been charged in the sweeping college admissions scandal, in which wealthy CEOs and celebrities are accused of paying up to $6 million to secure slots for their children in some of the nation’s most selective universities.

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