Educators Caught Leaking Test Questions

By Nathan Burstein

Published June 02, 2010, issue of June 11, 2010.
  • Print
  • Share Share

It was criminal detectives who had to do the toughest problem solving on a recent math test for Israeli high school seniors.

ISTOCK PHOTO

The Israel Police Fraud and Investigations Unit appeared May 30 to have cracked the case related to this year’s math bagrut, successfully determining the identity of those who leaked test material in the days leading up to the May 24 exam.

Erez Cohen, a teacher from the Haifa area, and Rachel Kedem, a member of the Education Ministry committee that writes the exam, are likely to be indicted for their roles in the scheme, which placed test questions in the hands of students as they crammed for the all-important year-end test, roughly equivalent to the math portion of the American SAT. Students cannot graduate high school in Israel without qualifying test scores.

Cohen, a teacher at the preparatory academy of Haifa’s Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, is believed to have passed the material he received from Kedem to one of his own pupils, who in turn sold the questions to as many as several hundred other students. Cohen claimed in an interview with Israel’s Channel 2 that he believed he was supplying the student with questions from a “draft” exam, rather than with questions that would appear on the actual test. Neither he nor Kedem is suspected of receiving money from students.

Already a stressful day for high schoolers and administrators, the math bagrut caused more havoc than usual this year, with the Education Ministry initially uncertain about how to respond. After delaying the exam by 24 hours and assembling new questions, the ministry was flooded by complaints from teachers, who had problems downloading the new test from a specially created website.

Nevertheless, the ministry sought to put a positive spin on the fiasco, thanking the police in a public statement, and noting the “important educational and ethical lesson” students could learn from the incident.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • It’s over. The tyranny of the straight-haired, button nosed, tan-skinned girl has ended. Jewesses rejoice!
  • It's really, really, really hard to get kicked out of Hebrew school these days.
  • "If Netanyahu re-opens the settlement floodgates, he will recklessly bolster the argument of Hamas that the only language Israel understands is violence."
  • Would an ultra-Orthodox leader do a better job of running the Met Council?
  • So, who won the war — Israel or Hamas?
  • 300 Holocaust survivors spoke out against Israel. Did they play right into Hitler's hands?
  • Ari Folman's new movie 'The Congress' is a brilliant spectacle, an exhilarating visual extravaganza and a slapdash thought experiment. It's also unlike anything Forward critic Ezra Glinter has ever seen. http://jd.fo/d4unE
  • The eggplant is beloved in Israel. So why do Americans keep giving it a bad rap? With this new recipe, Vered Guttman sets out to defend the honor of her favorite vegetable.
  • “KlezKamp has always been a crazy quilt of gay and straight, religious and nonreligious, Jewish and gentile.” Why is the klezmer festival shutting down now?
  • “You can plagiarize the Bible, can’t you?” Jill Sobule says when asked how she went about writing the lyrics for a new 'Yentl' adaptation. “A couple of the songs I completely stole." Share this with the theater-lovers in your life!
  • Will Americans who served in the Israeli army during the Gaza operation face war crimes charges when they get back home?
  • Talk about a fashion faux pas. What was Zara thinking with the concentration camp look?
  • “The Black community was resistant to the Jewish community coming into the neighborhood — at first.” Watch this video about how a group of gardeners is rebuilding trust between African-Americans and Jews in Detroit.
  • "I am a Jewish woman married to a non-Jewish man who was raised Catholic, but now considers himself a “common-law Jew.” We are raising our two young children as Jews. My husband's parents are still semi-practicing Catholics. When we go over to either of their homes, they bow their heads, often hold hands, and say grace before meals. This is an especially awkward time for me, as I'm uncomfortable participating in a non-Jewish religious ritual, but don't want his family to think I'm ungrateful. It's becoming especially vexing to me now that my oldest son is 7. What's the best way to handle this situation?" http://jd.fo/b4ucX What would you do?
  • Maybe he was trying to give her a "schtickle of fluoride"...
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.