Why Schools Should Crack Down on Cheating

Most schools have established honor codes and other rules to prevent students from cheating on exams. A fiery debate taking place is the cheating that ensues in schools and the detrimental consequences it has on our children’s futures. I, for one, believe schools are too lenient with cheating and ought to enforce harsher penalties on students caught cheating. Students, in my opinion, deceive teaches on a daily basis.

Actions such as copying someone else’s homework, cheating on a test, and plagiarizing essays happen on a regular basis in most American schools. Students admit, sometimes even boast, to their peers about how they cheated on an exam or found the homework answers off the Internet. A question I regularly ask is, “What happened in this country? When did cheating become something to brag about?”. Students should not be braggadocio about cheating; in fact, students should be embarrassed that they cheated and should be humiliated that they were caught. Instead, they are lauded by their peers, as if the cheater was a cunning knight who defeated the ferocious dragon and saved the princess.

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And this is where our country has failed us. The education system is not corrupt- the students are. Students can easily cheat their way through school and earn a masters degree. There are two problems that arise from this situation. The first is what happens directly after the cheater is caught. I feel as if the punishments and penalties for cheating are not strict nor are they harsh enough.

Soon as the problem is corrected with harsh penalties the student should receive the message loud and clear: Cheating is unacceptable. Harshen up on cheating students and the problem shrivel up. The second problem that arises out of a pathological cheater is his future. What will said student do when he is unable to cheat on tests or copy homework or plagiarize? The answer is simple: He will fail. All of his cheating will lead him to failure, both in academic world and in the real world.

But let’s say the student cheats himself all the way to a career. There is no doubt in my mind that this person will practice unethical and unlawful business. With nobody to correct them is early stages how will he ever stop? Cheating, in many ways, similar to smoking cigarettes. If nobody corrects the smoker’s habits in the early stages, it will soon become addictive and soon will become a crutch. Smoking not only hurts the smoker, but also hurts those around him. And when the time comes, smoking can bring very unfortunate consequences.

The same holds true for cheaters. In my opinion, schools should not be any more tolerant of cheating than they already are. A cheater should be penalized greatly, sending a message to the cheater and those around him that it is not an acceptable practice. Schools should crack down on cheating before cheaters get a rude awakening in college, and in real life.