Expect a lot of fanfare over the AJC.com story about the arrest of seven students, including an Emory sophomore, for cheating on the SAT as the media is focused on the current testing mania and the pressures students are feeling and this is an extreme example.
What I find most interesting is that six high school students had enough personal resources to allegedly pay Emory student and apparently ace test taker Sam Eshaghoff between $1,500 and $2,500 to pose as them and sit for the college admissions test.
That’s a lot of babysitting cash.
The six teens were from Eshaghoff’s prestigious Long Island, N.Y., high school. Eshaghoff is a 2010 graduate of Great Neck North who spent his freshman year at the University of Michigan before transferring to Emory in Atlanta.
Eshaghoff, 19, of Great Neck was facing arraignment after being arrested on charges of scheming to defraud, criminal impersonation and falsifying business records, said Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice.
According to the AJC:
“Colleges look for the best and brightest students, yet these six defendants tried to cheat the system and may have kept honest and qualified students from getting into their dream school,” Rice said.
In a statement issued Tuesday, Emory confirmed that Eshaghoff is enrolled as a sophomore but did not say what discipline he might face. “Emory University expects that all students act honorably, demonstrating a keen sense of ethical conduct,” and to comply with the university’s Undergraduate Code of Conduct, Emory said. “Students alleged to be found in violation of this code are referred to the University Conduct Council for review and possible action.”
Rice said that between 2010 and 2011, six students at Great Neck North High School paid him to take the SAT in hopes of achieving a higher score. The six students implicated in the case were not identified because of their ages, a spokesman for the prosecutor said. Earlier this year, Great Neck North faculty members heard rumors that students had paid a third party to take the SAT for them, Rice said. Administrators then identified six students who “had large discrepancies between their academic performance records and their SAT scores,” the prosecutor said.
The students had registered to take the tests at a different school where they would not be recognized. Eshaghoff then went to the schools and showed a photo ID with his picture, but another student’s name on it, Rice said. At least once, Eshaghoff flew home from college primarily to impersonate two students and took the SAT twice in one weekend.
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog