Teachers jailed for high school exam cheating in Senegal
Dakar, Senegal – A Dakar court jailed a group of teachers for up to five years for cheating in high school exams, a lawyer for the defendants said Thursday.
Forty-two people – including a headmaster, teachers and students – were accused of charges including “criminal conspiracy, fraud and fraudulently obtaining undue material benefits” after baccalaureate papers were leaked in July 2017.
The scandal resulted in the cancellation of French and history-geography tests after topics were circulated on social media, including WhatsApp.
A headmaster at a provincial high school was sentenced to five years in prison and fined 500,000 francs ($498,500) after the trial on May 24.
A teacher in Dakar was given two years, a fine of 18 million francs ($17.9 million) in addition to a confiscation of property, according to the lawyer.
Other sentences handed down to pupils and teachers ranged from two months suspension to one year.
One student was released, while others walked free after spending several months in detention.
The education sector in Senegal has been hit by several crises in recent years, including repeated strikes by staff and students.
The recurring disruptions have led to a drop in the quality of education, according to specialists, forcing many parents to opt for private schooling. /kga
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