Allegations of Cheating Once Again Surround the Men’s Soccer Team - Administration Under Criticism from Parents and Students Alike
For the second time in the last two years, members of the men’s soccer team are facing allegations of cheating, prompting complaints of preferential treatment towards the team.
The allegations emerged after geometry teacher Delano F. Franklin announced to his class that he saw extremely high scores on the last final exam.
Members of the math team the Superhero Mathletes also reported that while they were packing up for their practice at 5 p.m. the day before the geometry final, they witnessed two players from the soccer team carry a document out of Franklin’s office, walk towards the library, and return with several pieces of paper.
“It just seems fishy, like they went to make a copy of the exam,” Aidan P. Ryan, one of the mathletes, said in an interview.
Franklin and the Sky High School math department did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
Jonah S. Berger, coach of the men’s soccer team, said there was no “definitive proof” that his players cheated on the exam.
“They’re hardworking and honest, and I am appalled at how they have been treated by this community,” Berger said.
This is not the first time the men’s soccer team has been embroiled in a cheating scandal. Last year, five members of the men’s soccer team were caught cheating on a test before an upcoming game. Administrators suspended the players for one game, a consequence that many parents criticized as being too lenient.
The Parent Teacher Association recently started a petition calling for the suspension of players involved in the recent geometry class cheating incident.
Due to their numerous championship wins, the men’s team also brings in considerable amounts of revenue to the school through paid sponsorship and contributions from alumni.
Members of the women’s soccer team expressed frustration because they said the men’s team has been receiving more funding and preferential treatment from the administration, despite the cheating allegations.
Alexis A. Luther, coach of the women’s soccer team, said she believes the women’s soccer team has long been “underfunded” and “underappreciated” by the administration.
“We have won multiple state championships, and still are not seen as equals with the men’s team,” Luther said. “My girls are simply frustrated with how the administration has handled the situation, as they ought to be.”
Principal Shera L. Avi-Yonah said the administration is currently investigating the allegations.
“We do not tolerate and have never tolerated this kind of behavior in our community, but we must be able to prove these allegations are true beyond a reasonable doubt before we are able to discuss possible punishments,” she said.