Cheating SAT teacher gets 8 months in prison

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Cheating SAT teacher gets 8 months in prison

A Seoul court sentenced a teacher from a private tutoring center to eight months in prison yesterday after finding him guilty of leaking questions from the SAT, a test that helps determine college admissions in the United States.

The Seoul Central District Court said in a verdict that the 36-year-old instructor, identified by his surname Jang, “deliberately planned” the crime for the sake of his reputation and financial benefit.

Jang, a popular lecturer in Seoul’s affluent Gangnam district, confessed to prosecutors that he leaked exam sheets from the Scholastic Aptitude Test to use them in his classes, for which students paid high tuition in hopes of getting good SAT scores.

The court also ordered three others to pay 3 million won ($2,625) in fines each for colluding with Jang.

“His crime seriously interfered with the test taken around the world and greatly damaged the credibility of the test administration among students and the public,” the Seoul Central District Court said in the ruling.

The U.S. Educational Testing Service (ETS), the organizer of the SAT tests, strictly bans the disclosure of SAT test papers.

The case highlighted the fierce competition among students who apply to U.S. universities.

Thousands of South Koreans go to the United States for higher education, either because they are not satisfied with the level of education offered at home or could not win admission to the most competitive Korean universities.

In 2008, South Korean households spent 20.9 trillion won on private education to supplement the perceived shortcomings of the public school system.

The number of private educational institutes in South Korea has increased nearly 50-fold since 1970, according to the education ministry. Yonhap

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