Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Pity The Cheaters?

The school forced the students to cheat? Puhleeze! What happened at Hanover High involved a lot more than taking a peek at a fellow student's paper.

Excerpt from this September 19, 2007 article in the Boston Globe (emphases mine):

HANOVER, N.H. - Academics is serious business in this well-to-do town, where life revolves around Dartmouth College. Ivy League credentials rank alongside Subaru wagons and restored farmhouses as status symbols, and high school students are expected to excel and land acceptances to prestigious universities.

So, as final exams loomed and pressure built last June at Hanover High School, some students hatched a scheme for acing the tests: One evening after school was out, a group of students entered the school building, authorities say. While some stood sentry in hallways, others entered a classroom and used stolen keys to break into a teacher's filing cabinet and steal exams for advanced math honors, advanced math, Algebra II, and calculus. Five days later, another group stole chemistry finals. In total, some 50 students are suspected of participating in the thefts, either helping to plan them or receiving answers from stolen exams.

Parents of the accused are furious and frantically trying to reduce charges to violations that carry no criminal penalties, penalties they say could harm their children's chances of attending college or securing employment. The scandal has divided the community, with some residents laying blame squarely on the nine accused students - dubbed "the Notorious Nine" - while others have questioned whether the intense competitiveness of 750-student Hanover High forced students into positions of having to cheat....
Predictably, the lawyering-up has already occurred.

And the incident involved a lot more than this:

Information from the school's web site, if my search is correct:
Hanover High School is an active learning community that provides broad academic and co-curricular programs. We engage students’ minds, hearts, and voices so that they become educated, caring, and responsible adults.

All students are given the opportunity and encouragement to use their

• MINDS to pursue excellence, academic challenge, and personal success.

• HEARTS to respect and care for the emotional and physical well-being of themselves and others, and for the environment.

• VOICES to contribute to the democratic process and the common good.
What is your view? Is the school being too harsh in filing criminal charges against the students?

[Hat-tip to Raven, who sent me the link to the article in the Boston Globe]


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posted by Always On Watch @ 9/19/2007 08:55:00 AM