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College Board Sues Test-Prep Company, Countersuit Filed

February 26, 2008

by Paulina Mis

After being sued by College Board, the makers of the SAT, Karen Dillard’s College Prep LP, a student test-prep company, announced its intent to file a countersuit. Last week, College Board filed charges against the Texas-based company accusing it of illegally obtaining, circulating and selling their PSAT and SAT materials.

According to the Chronicle of Higher Education, the company was said to have acquired the unreleased PSAT tests from a high school principal whose brother worked for Karen Dillard, the owner of the test-prep company  After conducting a four-month investigation, College Board decided to take the case to court. In addition to filing charges, College Board threatened to cancel the scores of students who had access to official test material prior to the SAT test day.

Soon after the College Board lawsuit was filed, Karen Dillard, the owner of the test-prep company, filed a suit of her own. She claimed that College Board had unlawfully obtained private information from a previous, disgruntled employee and that such information could not be legally used against her. She also complained that College Board was trying to drive her company out of business.

In past years, College Board had sold previously used SAT exam material to private companies, and Ms. Dillard stated that she had paid for such material. College Board eventually stopped this practice and began to offer tutoring services. According to Ms. Dillard, the lawsuit was an attempt by the company to monopolize the tutoring market and to eliminate small companies such as her own.

Though Ms. Dillard did not deny having acquired some test material without College Board’s authorization, she maintained that the information was obtained after tests had been taken.


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