Brain Trusts

Washington wants to know if colleges are fixing prices

President of the debating team, 1300 on her boards, reads Noam Chomsky in her spare time, parents make $30,000 a year. Let's see, $3,000 in financial aid sounds about right. You on board, Brown? What about you, Barnard?

Every spring, exchanges like this occur among the deans of 23 top private colleges. The idea is to avoid bidding wars for students accepted by more than one college, and to ensure that institutions are similarly interpreting financial information submitted by parents. But the Justice Department has decided to look into this practice, as well as into the fact that within groupings --...

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