GREAT NECK, NY (CBSNewYork) — As the investigation expands into widespread cheating on both the SAT and ACT college entrance exams expands, the records of at least two former students from Great Neck’s North Shore Hebrew Academy have been subpoenaed, due to discrepancies in scores and questionable handwriting.
The two students are suspected of paying someone else to take their SAT’s for them. One had nearly a 300 point jump in test score, the other 90 points after four tries. One or more of those tests was allegedly taken by someone else.
One parent said he’s not surprised if the allegations are true because kids cheating on tests is nothing new.
“It’s happened before over the years so who knows what’s going on,” he said.
Sources tell CBS 2 that more than 30 students in at least five schools may have paid thousands of dollars as stand ins to take not only the SAT, but also the ACT as well.
“There is a lot of anger over the fact that the kids who cheated and did so unjustly will cause a bad name for all of Great Neck,” said student Jacob Roth.
“We don’t need these tests. It just leaves room for corruption,” said parent Monelle Palgon.
“Not my kid, no way,” said parent Arlene Somach.
The scandal broke in September with the arrest of Sam Eshaghoff, a graduate of Great Neck North, charged with accepting thousands of dollars to take the SAT for six then-current students at the school.
District Attorney Kathleen Rice demanded security changes from the Educational Testing Service, and launched a full scale probe.
CBS 2 has learned that involved are at least five schools, including three private schools, and 31 students who may have paid as many as seven impersonator stand-ins.
Four were fired to take the SAT, and three for the ACT.
“There is a tremendous amount of pressure. We are in a district that is extremely competitive. And it’s a shame because obviously the parents were involved if the kids were coming up with that kind of money to pay a student,” said parent Eileen Forest.
Rice says it is likely not all students under investigation will be arrested, partly because a two-to-five year statute of limitations has run out.
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