In post-COVID schools, let’s redouble efforts to support students

The other day, my friend’s high school daughter complained, “It’s not fair!” “What’s not fair?” her mother asked. “Everyone is cheating!” her daughter replied. “They started doing it during COVID, and now it’s a habit.” Unfortunately, academic dishonesty is just one example of the many negative consequences of the COVID pandemic.

In hindsight, we have ample evidence that remote learning during COVID increased hardships for PK-12 students, both academically and non-academically. Some students lacked necessary resources. In one study, even after all students were provided with a laptop computer, internet access, and headphones, low-income students’ school attendance and engagement were consistently less frequent than their higher-income peers (An, 2021). Food insecurity also increased during COVID, partly due to the hiatus of school breakfast, lunch, and take-home snack pack programs (Parekh et al., 2021). And worst of all, children at home during COVID were twice as likely to experience physical abuse and three times likely to experience emotional abuse during the pandemic than in prior years (Park & Walsh, 2022).

Without a doubt, remote learning during COVID was distressing for students, with 71 percent of parents in one study reporting that the pandemic had “taken a toll on their child’s mental health” (Abramson, 2022, para. 2). …Read More

5 tips to build academic integrity

The importance of academic integrity can’t be underestimated, especially when it comes to blended learning. And these aren’t just words. Statistics show there was a 68 percent increase in the number of integrity violations reported in 2019-2020 compared with 2018-2019.

With the rise of digital innovation, distance learning technology has become an integral part of blended learning – an approach that integrates technology and digital media with traditional instructor-led classroom activities. It also made academic integrity a significant point of concern. Students are now expected to possess an increased degree of autonomy – probably the highest in history, which might nudge them toward cheating.

Related content: 4 best practices for remote testing…Read More

Erased answers on tests in Philadelphia lead to a three-year cheating scandal

The first sign that something was wrong appeared more than two years ago when a company grading student tests from Philadelphia noticed that erasures from wrong to right answers showed what investigators delicately called “statistical evidence of improbable results,” The New York Times reports. Pennsylvania began an investigation, eventually instructing the school district to look into improprieties at 19 schools. Over the course of a year, the district found disturbing patterns in parts of the system that resulted in three principals being fired last week for test cheating in one of the largest such scandals in the country…

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