Daily Israel Report

Cheating Student Gets Probation

A woman who cheated on a national exam has been convicted on criminal charges and sentenced to probation and a fine.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 5/22/2011, 8:56 PM / Last Update: 5/24/2011, 1:45 PM

Flash 90

Judge Ido Droyan decided to send a message to young students last week when he found a woman accused of cheating on an exam in his courtroom. The woman was sentenced to three months' probation and a 1,000 shekel fine.

The woman had admitted to attempting to cheat on the Amir exam, which determines whether students entering university will be exempt from learning English. After doing poorly on the exam once, she decided to send another woman in her place for the second attempt.

She was caught when testers noticed the wide gap in her performance on the first and second tests.

A court-ordered assessment by social workers suggested that the young woman be allowed to avoid a conviction, and to atone for her crime through community service.

However, Droyan sided with police, who called to convict the student. “Many young people do not take this crime seriously. They see it as a small thing, a kind of youthful folly, definitely not a matter so serious that it justifies a criminal trial. The social workers' recommendation would strengthen that wrong perception, and send an inaccurate message to students,” he said.

Droyan also cited the damage cheaters do to tests' reliability as a reason for the unusually tough sentence, as well as the manpower and money that testing companies must invest in tracking down cheaters.