At the freshmen orientations at both Rider and another school which were attended by my children, we parents were told that our 18 year-olds were now adults. Although we were expected to subsidize their educations, they had the right to deny us access to their grades or any other "personal" information derived from their attendance at these schools and, as these rules were governed by law, any other schools they might have chosen.
At 18, these young adults can marry, can join the military and can sign contracts and make agreements on their own behalf. This said, I consider the death of the young man following the frat party a tragedy, but not one that is beyond predictable.
There is only so far parents. administrators and instructors can go without interfering with the rights of these newly minted young adults. One might assume, however incorrectly, that the mantle of adulthood also imbues 18 year-olds with some sort of instant wisdom, but of course, this is not the case.
This event simply underscores the fact that some students are not mentally or emotionally prepared to make the transition from the control of the family to the independence of a college campus. This tragedy is a combination of perhaps, too liberal a campus for this student, poor judgement on his part and colossal negligence on the part of the fraternity heads. Embroiling the administration is simply going to make Rider's campus akin to my strict parochial high school of the early 1960's where the tiniest infraction required punitive and usually humiliating consequences.
I feel for the parents. The frat boys involved will no doubt never recover from the guilt and remorse engendered by their role in this tragedy. There will be a shakeup in the administration at Rider, and surely, stricter rules will be enacted against on-campus drinking and partying. However, the presumption that the administrators are supposed to be babysitters for the legally recognized "adults" is incorrect.
Every student does not have the maturity to live in a campus environment. When choosing schools, parents should be aware of the limitations of their children, and choose their schools carefully.