This week, it was revealed that at least 20 -- and perhaps as many as 50 -- students in New York City were involved in a cheating scheme, in which high school students had others secretly taking the SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test) for them.
Some of those taking the SAT for the high school students were paid as much as $3,500 for doing so, according to the Nassau County district attorney.
As a result of this testing scandal, students who take college entrance exams now will be required to submit photo IDs with their applications.
This is a sad situation, not only for the students involved, but also for their parents, and for the American educational process in general. Obviously, when high school students are paying up to $3,500 to others for taking their SATs, their parents are providing them with this kind of money, indicating that these parents are well-aware of their children's SAT scheme.
What has become of America's educational system, along with the values -- including honesty -- that it is expected to instill in our students?
Are we now allowing cheating in our society because we believe it is all right for us to achieve a goal that we could not otherwise achieve? Moreover, are these students' parents -- who should know better -- not just as guilty as their children for supporting such a criminal scheme?
We have heard the argument that high school students are "under a lot of pressure" to be accepted by a college today. Nonetheless, that argument does not justify students paying others to take their SATs, so they can be accepted by a college.
The fact is that high school students should do the best they can on the SAT, and hopefully, they will be accepted at one or more of the several colleges to which they applied.
If a high school senior is not accepted at a college, he or she can perhaps attend a community (2-year) college. After two years of studying at a community college, the student can then transfer to a four-year college.
Another option is for high school seniors to join the work force after graduating, and to attend a college one or two nights each week, in order to earn a degree in a continuing education program. These programs tend to have lower admission requirements than full-time day college programs.
In any event, these are viable options for attending college that some high school graduates might want to pursue.
Most importantly, they are options that are honest and law-abiding -- unlike the dishonest and criminal SAT cheating scheme.