Hundreds suspected of cheating on final exam

January 5, 2012 2:51:56 PM PST
Did hundreds of seniors at Clear Lake High School cheat on a final exam? That's what Clear Creek ISD officials are investigating.

But in the meantime, until they can prove who cheated and who didn't, they're giving all seniors a choice -- even the ones who may have cheated. District officials are still trying to figure out how the answers to the test were leaked. They say as many as 200 students may have cheated.

Back at school after the winter break, Clear Lake High School students are talking about the texts that swirled from student to student last month with answers to the English 4 final exam.

"I got them from friends I don't even talk to any more," admitted senior Anthony Dabideen. "Like everybody had them, I'm pretty sure the whole senior class."

Anthony didn't show us the text, but he says he did think about using the answers.

"I had it on me and stuff and I was just like kind of peeping at it and the test," he said. "They were all wrong. I was like, OK, definitely don't go with these answers."

They were wrong at that point because the school suspected cheating after the first day of the multiple choice test and had changed the order of the questions for the following days. It was following that second day of testing that school officials confirmed cheating.

"The order of the questions were rearranged and the answers came back as if it was the first day test," explained Clear Creek ISD spokesperson Elaina Polsen.

The test was given to more than 600 students, mostly seniors. A third are believed to have cheated.

Polsen said, "This is not simply about a final exam in English 4. This is about academic integrity."

Clear Creek ISD's student code of conduct states that those found guilty of "academic dishonesty" can receive a zero on the test and receive in-school suspension. But district officials say more investigation will need to be done before any zeros are given or disciplinary action taken.

Students will be allowed to retake the test or skip it and just take an average of grades from the rest of the year.

"I'm definitely retaking it, because why not? It's a chance to boost my grade," said senior Ariel Gill.

We worked on this story through our partnership with Houston Community Newspapers. You can read more about the cheating investigation in the Bay Area Citizen.


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