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Moroccan Cheaters’ Got Talent

By Youssef Sourgo

Morocco World News

Casablanca, February 26, 2013

Subsequent to the bitter reality that has recently been unveiled by the Moroccan Ministry of National Education, in which the latter disclosed the number of Moroccan baccalaureate students who were spotted cheating during the national exam taken in 2012, Moroccans are now questioning the effectuality of the Moroccan educational system more than ever before.

According to the list that has recently been made public by the Ministry of National Education, 3112 is the number of students found cheating during the national exam of last year. The list also exposes the methods whereby each student attempted to cheat, and even featured the disciplinary board’s decisions towards each student found cheating.

The ministry has made its motif behind the exposure of such deplorable truth crystal-clear, which is to bring what is going on in the soberest corners of Moroccan schools to the forefront of the public opinion, including parents, educators, researchers in the arena of education and pedagogy, politicians, and Moroccan at large.

Furthermore, the list unveiled by the ministry featured a colon entitled “cheating methods,” thus rationalizing the sort of decision taken towards the student in concern. Having a glance at the myriad of methods that the students recurred to in their attempts to cheat, I feel more like reading the list of contestants participating in a talent show, wherein each of them strives to do it “the most creative way possible.”

Some of the cheating students found it more practical to stick to traditional methods of cheating, or traditional “talents,” as might be perceived from their angle. Those in this category resorted to mainstream methods ranging from asking the help of the student sitting the closest to them, to taking out a couple “7jabat” (minimized versions of texts or summaries of lessons) prepared prior to the day of the exam—perhaps weeks earlier, to exchanging exam papers with other students in the room.

Those who wanted to ‘step their game up’ resorted to new technologies and other unusual methods of cheating, for they thought teachers might not anticipate having students recur to such methods to cheat during the national exam. Though becoming stepwise a tool that will soon join the list of traditional methods of cheating, the phone figures as one of the methods to which Moroccan cheating students resort the most. Be it via Bluetooth earplugs, or ordinary earplugs (with wires), those students did not mind adding their flavor of creativity to those technologies. The most peculiar, yet creative, of them is putting a skin-color make-up (by both boys and girls) on the top of the earplug wires that find their way along their necks all the way to their ears.

Multitudinous are other alternatives that students recur to in their cheating process that the list unveiled by the ministry did not feature, a thing that can be interpreted as a ‘success story’ for those students who ‘could get away with it’. Now “where do you think you’re going, dear cheater?” is the question I’d ask anyone of them if I happen to come across him/her. All right, hats off! You managed to successfully pass the baccalaureate exam ‘like-a-boss’, but what now! Are you going to cheat in university, if you ever get the chance to enroll in it? Are you going to cheat to make your boss happy with your work, if you ever consider working after you obtain your unmerited certificate? Where do you think you’re going?

Those who resort to cheating under the pretext that the test they are exposed to signals a turning point in their lives, and thus legitimizes their use of unethical methods to pass it, might be partially right in this regard. However, what seems the hardest test today, will look like ‘a piece of cake’ when one comes across a more challenging one in the future. You all have tremendous talents, dear cheaters, talents that you sadly deploy there where you render them anything but something you can be proud of! What would you tell your kids years later to encourage them to work harder for their exams—something like, “Work hard dear son/daughter! Do like me when I was your age!” How would you feel when cheating clings to you longer than you ever think?

Dear talented cheaters, if you want a standing ovation at the end of a performance, make sure you sweat enough and put your heart in it. If it had worked on a stage (baccalaureate) once, it doesn’t forcibly mean that it is going to work all across the board. One day, this is in case you maintain cheating your main performance, you will either realize that the theatre is empty at the end of your show, or wind up being the target of trash thrown at you by an audience that has for so long believed in the genuineness of your talent. Think about it!

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Morocco World News’ editorial policy

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