College Recommendation Waiver Information
Discussion of the question: Should I waive my rights to see my college recommendations?
(Edited from college counselor’s listserv)
Waiving the right to see recommendations is key to an honest portrayal of the student. Theoretically, the teacher should be able to separate the students & write honestly. It might be best to have the student ask the counselor in the school their advice. That person may be best able to gauge the situation accurately & honestly. The student should have a back-up teacher.
It is almost always a good idea to waive one’s right to see the recommendation. First of all, it is almost unheard of these days for a college to save the recommendations long enough for the student to enroll. Only an enrolled student has a legal right, and colleges routinely shred these before school starts.
Secondly, it is very rare NOT to waive your right, so it sends a red flag to both the college that the student may have some reason to mistrust the teacher, and, more importantly, to the teacher, who is suddenly on guard, which is not a helpful mindset when writing a letter.
Of course there are always special circumstances, so if you have further questions, please see your counselor for advice.