An SAT cheating scandal at a local (non-Queens) New York high school has put the spotlight on what could be a widespread lack of honesty and integrity among high school students sitting for the SAT. The NYT has the story:
“The main risk for a cheater is getting caught,” [said one student.] “Why wouldn’t you do it?”…
“Other students reported cases in which proctors left the room or fell asleep while testing was in session. According to a Stuyvesant senior, Marina Shneerson, students often post comments on their Facebook walls after the SAT such as, ‘Haha, Googled all the words on my phone.’”
Stuyvesant is one of the best public high schools in the country, with tough entrance exams and a culture of excellence. If students there think cheating on the SATS is widespread, the problem is huge.
Stories like this tell more about where the country is heading tham many of the more dramatic news stories on the front pages. This news is not good. A country is only as great as its people, and a nation of cheaters is not a great nation.
With teachers in some schools actually cheating to raise achievement test scores and students feeling that getting into the “right” college is more important than personal honesty, it’s clear we can’t take the future for granted.
The existence of a republic of laws depends on the honesty and the competence of both voters and officials. A country of liars, posers, and ignorant hustlers will soon be neither free nor rich. Something has gone badly wrong, and without a moral recovery, the flames of liberty that have illuminated the annals of this magnificent republic must sooner or later gutter out.