Appeals court clears Harvard of racial bias in admissions

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FILE – In this July 16, 2019, file photo, people stop to record images of Widener Library on the campus of Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. U.S. District Judge Allison D. Burroughs ruled, Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2019, that Harvard does not discriminate against Asian Americans in its admissions process. The judge issued the ruling in a 2014 lawsuit that alleged Harvard holds Asian American applicants to a higher standard than students of other races. Burroughs said Harvard’s admissions process is not perfect but passes constitutional muster. (AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)

Boston (AP) – A federal appeals in court has upheld a district court decision clearing Harvard University of intentional discrimination against Asian American applicants.

A two-judge panel of the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston rejected claims from an anti-affirmative action group that accuses the Ivy League university of imposing a “racial penalty” on Asian Americans.

The decision delivers a blow to the group, Students for Fair Admissions, and moves the case a step closer to a possible review by the Supreme Court.

The group’s 2014 lawsuit alleges that Harvard’s admissions officers use a subjective “personal rating” to discriminate against Asian Americans who apply to the school. Harvard denies any discrimination.

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