Teachers’ ‘tricks’ for helping pupils cheat are revealed by Ofqual

The Sunday Times is reporting research from Ofqual suggesting teachers are helping students to cheat by writing their coursework, inflating essay marks and even giving them advice during tests…

The paper reveals that Ofqual appealed for teachers to give details of malpractice and unethical teachers and received responses from more than 500 whistleblowers.

The findings were revealed by Ofqual last week at an event on teacher ethics at Oxford University.

A fifth of cases reported involved cases of colleagues writing sections of coursework, dictating essays as they were being typed or providing examples for students to copy of high-quality coursework from previous years.

About 40% gave examples of staff letting a class repeat a “controlled assessment”.

Almost 15% said staff had given “pointers to questions” or “hints about the right solutions” while invigilating exams.

60% admitting to giving students “the benefit of the doubt” when marking GCSE work.

One teacher is quoted as telling Ofqual:

“Giving students too much support in their coursework is a massive issue… It ranges from providing them with specific examples of good work, letting them copy others’ work, allowing students to work together to plan work… [and] teachers standing over students telling them what to write…”

 

Clearly there is a huge issue here with why teachers are feeling the need to do this – the pressure they are under – but that surely can never be an excuse.

Is it not time for cheating in schools to be taken more seriously in all respects?

It is desperately unfair on students and teachers who stick to the rules yet currently seems too often just to be swept under the carpet (in contrast, for example, the the case recently in the US where a number of teachers have been sent to prison for cheating).

Your thoughts?

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Comments

  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Teachers take the fall when a school is “caught” but they almost certainly haven’t done it out of choice. Targets to be met

  2. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Funding, pay, parental choice, Ofsted judgement all rely on the outcome of exams thanks to the system created by MPs

  3. SchoolsImprove

    andylutwyche I’m sure that’s right but culture seems to accept it. Surely harder for schls to pressure staff to cheat if sanctions steeper?

  4. SchoolsImprove

    andylutwyche I’m sure that’s right but culture seems to accept it. Surely harder for schls to pressure staff to cheat if sanctions steeper?

  5. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove I imagine there have been a huge number of “this controlled assessment hasn’t met target” conversations in the last month

  6. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Really – mortgages to pay, printer on hand to print out a P45… I imagine more prevalent in some schools than others

  7. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove This is precisely why coursework/controlled assessment should be removed completely so teachers aren’t pressurised like this

  8. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove No evidence other than teacher’s word against person who leaned as it will all be conversational

  9. Mktadvice4schls

    andylutwyche SchoolsImprove in distant past (c10 years ago) we could give low c/wk marks & school accepted it. Now seen as teacher’s fault

  10. andylutwyche

    Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove Correct – no-one must be left behind even if their complete lack of effort means that they ought to be

  11. Mktadvice4schls

    andylutwyche SchoolsImprove …in many schools. So we have to get rid of it until attitudes change – alternative is current corruption

  12. andylutwyche

    Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove I couldn’t agree more & since current attitude unlikely to change rid the world of controlled assessment

  13. andylutwyche

    Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove I couldn’t agree more & since current attitude unlikely to change rid the world of controlled assessment

  14. jwscattergood

    andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove Couldn’t agree more here. 100% pass rate expected on BTECs too.

  15. andylutwyche

    jwscattergood Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove Quite – failure not an option until the real world entered then brought to earth with a bump

  16. Mktadvice4schls

    andylutwyche jwscattergood SchoolsImprove was about to write something similar – worry for many who claim passes based on teacher work

  17. Mktadvice4schls

    andylutwyche jwscattergood SchoolsImprove was about to write something similar – worry for many who claim passes based on teacher work

  18. andylutwyche

    Mktadvice4schls jwscattergood SchoolsImprove Businesses claiming young not prepared for work are correct, because schools not allowed to

  19. Funkymonkey199

    andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove know of child who would not do course work/ controlled assessment & staff have done alot.

  20. andylutwyche

    Funkymonkey199 Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove Presumably under pressure from those above them in the food chain…

  21. Mktadvice4schls

    andylutwyche jwscattergood SchoolsImprove know of schl where every student got top A for A-level coursework. Boards must turn blind eye

  22. Funkymonkey199

    Funkymonkey199 andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove I would assume so, in order to hit targets. Think child prob knew as well.

  23. andylutwyche

    “TONYRUSHWORTH: andylutwyche SchoolsImprove can’t remove from art and technology” Agreed, unfortunately

  24. andylutwyche

    Mktadvice4schls jwscattergood SchoolsImprove You have to have a “very heavy cold” not to smell a rat there! Wording almost identical?

  25. andylutwyche

    Funkymonkey199 Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove I imagine all children do and know that they’ll get away with it

  26. Mktadvice4schls

    andylutwyche jwscattergood SchoolsImprove did hear one schls that was caught because teacher notes were submitted *with* coursework!

  27. andylutwyche

    Mktadvice4schls jwscattergood SchoolsImprove Teachers are essentially hung out to dry by SLTs at these schools too

  28. Funkymonkey199

    Funkymonkey199 andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove shame though for children who are proud to do their own work

  29. jwscattergood

    Mktadvice4schls andylutwyche SchoolsImprove I have seen departments writing whole assignments for external submission.

  30. andylutwyche

    Funkymonkey199 Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove Totally agree – this kind of thing makes a mockery of the system. Whistleblowers required?

  31. andylutwyche

    jwscattergood Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove It needs whistleblowers but the people who do are not protected it seems. Career suicide

  32. Funkymonkey199

    Funkymonkey199 andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove possibly, but this could jeopardise work of hardworking students as well?

  33. andylutwyche

    Funkymonkey199 Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove I know – tars all with the same brush unfairly in many cases

  34. jwscattergood

    andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove Jobs and pay are now on the line if targets not met. Getting ridiculous.

  35. andylutwyche

    jwscattergood Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove Quite! This happens when political ideologues are allowed to impose ideas without checks

  36. Funkymonkey199

    Funkymonkey199 andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove absolutely! So for minority that exploit majority may be penalised.

  37. Funkymonkey199

    Funkymonkey199 andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove feel sorry for teachers & believe there must be a better way to fair results

  38. Nor_edu

    Funkymonkey199 andylutwyche Mktadvice4schls SchoolsImprove PRP= teachers fault if students fail NOT students’

  39. Dave1948

    As a marker of GCSE Controlled Assessments it is blatantly obvious that cheating is prevalent and that the marks gained seldom reflect the real ability of candidates. Much of the work presented represents candidates’ ability (or lack of) to memorise
    material which has clearly been rehearsed ad nauseam.

    Is this what is wanted from GCSE ?

  40. 5N_Afzal

    Sorry, there is no excuse for cheating, none whatsoever. Pressure is same for all. Why are some compelled to cheat and not others. I fear they use Ofsted etc as an excuse to cover own shortcomings.

  41. Anonymous SciTeach

    It seems to depend on the culture of the school – if managers turn a blind eye, and prioritise grades over integrity, professionalism, and genuine assessment, then teachers are bound to cheat. GCSE controlled assessment continually improved / copied until it’s near-perfect, and even taken home; BTEC work copied or even not done at all by some students once the moderation sample has been selected; A level skill assessments completed with the overt help of the teacher. “Oh, every student gets an A* / distinction here. We get great results.”
    Seems to be justified as “we’re helping the students get the best grade” at the cost of teaching them how to do something properly or meaningfully.
    On the other hand, if the pervading culture is of ‘doing things properly’ and breaches of the rules are not accepted, then the focus is on providing a great structure, within the rules, that allows students to do as well as possible.
    This approach would seem to give the most benefit to students in the long term. And staff – as students will progress on to sixth form and beyond with a realistic sense of the effort and independence needed to succeed.

  42. Anonymous SciTeach

    It seems to depend on the culture of the school – if managers turn a blind eye, and prioritise grades over integrity, professionalism, and genuine assessment, then teachers are bound to cheat. GCSE controlled assessment continually improved / copied until it’s near-perfect, and even taken home; BTEC work copied or even not done at all by some students once the moderation sample has been selected; A level skill assessments completed with the overt help of the teacher. “Oh, every student gets an A* / distinction here. We get great results.”
    Seems to be justified as “we’re helping the students get the best grade” at the cost of teaching them how to do something properly or meaningfully.
    On the other hand, if the pervading culture is of ‘doing things properly’ and breaches of the rules are not accepted, then the focus is on providing a great structure, within the rules, that allows students to do as well as possible.
    This approach would seem to give the most benefit to students in the long term. And staff – as students will progress on to sixth form and beyond with a realistic sense of the effort and independence needed to succeed.

  43. PutneyDebates

    SchoolsImprove If performance of teacher and school judged on test results – with reward and punishments – cheating will inevitably occur.

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