The minority report of the Student Council Committee on Educational Policy will seek to improve, rather than abolish Sophomore Standing. The majority report last month recommended elimination of the Soph Standing program.
In a statement released yesterday, the minority said, "The advanced standing program adds valuable flexibility to the Harvard educational system, satisfying the needs of especially qualified students. We recommend that it be modified and retained."
The minority report attacked the arguments that a fourth year in the College is an educational necessity. "It is at least not obvious," it said, "that a fourth year would be much better for a S.S. student than a fifth one would be for everyone else."
Three Revisions Urged
With respect to acceleration, the minority offered three revisions: raising the academic standards for admission to the program; discouraging candidates from accepting Soph Standing unless they have a specific educational plan in mind; and providing early advice about the attitude of the students' anticipated Departments of concentration toward Advanced Standing. It also recommended retaining the option of a fourth year.
Concerning the program's exemptions, the minority report advocated requiring new sophomores to take two lower-level General Education courses outside their areas of concentration. And it proposed that all Sophomore Standing students be placed in the Yard during their first year of residence.
The report noted that 80 per cent of the Advanced Standing students polled by the SCCEP thought the program should be continued, and disagreed with the majority "assumption" that those who responded favorably were not qualified to judge. "We think this is wrong--at least it is an unproven assumption which will require careful investigation," the report said.
The fate of the minority report is not certain. Members agree that it represents the views of a considerable portion of the Committee. The majority report was approved by the Council, 10 to 9, after long debate and interesting parliamentary activity.
In its latest meeting, the Faculty CEP decided to postpone discussion of Sophomore Standing until next fall, when it will devote at least a full session to the question.