Mexico: Leak of the Week Puts Teachers Exam on the Free and Open Marketplace of Ideas

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“It’s a shitty world” –Lawrence Summers of the Harvard faculty

“What a wonderful world this could be.” –Satchmo

El Financiero (Mexico) reports: Mexico’s education department (SEP) postpones a national examination for teachers after the answer key shows up on the market for about US$1,000.

Meritocracy 2.0 in the Age of Elba Esther Gordillo.

This was merely an entrepreneurial, free-market effort designed to correct the examination’s lack of transparency, I am sure someone will tell us.

In a world in which lying, and cheating and stealing are the rule, rather than the exception, don’t we want our children to be taught by the best liars, cheaters, and thieves?

I mean, come on: Let’s be pragmatic.

Teach kids skills they can actually use.

At the same time, the Estado de S. Paulo (Brazil) reports that a competitive examination for 340 positions on the federal highway patrol was postponed here for a similar reason. The price reported in that case: about US$20,000.

México, 7 de diciembre.- La Secretaría de Educación Pública SEP anunció que se canceló el Examen Nacional de Actualización de los Maestros en Servicio ENAMS, que se realizaría este fin de semana en el Distrito Federal, debido a que se constató la fuga de materiales relacionados con la prueba.

The SEP announced it is cancelling ENAMS, a national continuing education examination for serving teachers, which was to be administered his weekend in Mexico City, due to the fact that test materials were found to have leaked.

Ante las denuncias de que este examen se vendió en casi 10 mil pesos entre maestros que aspiran a ascender en la carrera magisterial, la SEP reprobó el intento de hacer trampa en su aplicación.

Given charges that the exam was sold for nearly 10,000 pesos to teachers who aspire to promotion in their profession, the SEP denounced the attempt to defraud the test.

Destacó que hará todo lo que esté en el ámbito de su competencia para promover que se apliquen la ley y las sanciones correspondientes a quienes resulten responsables de robo, reproducción y venta de los reactivos para los exámenes.

It said it would to everything within its powers to make sure the law and the proper sanctions are applied to those responsible for the theft, copying and sale of answer keys to the exams.

My wife, who is thinking about going back to school, just took the FUVEST here in Brazil and scored high enough to advance into the second round of the program she is interested in.

So we have been squinting at a lot of gabaritos ourselves recently.

The answer keys on the sample tests tend to contain a lot of inaccuracies, I find. See

The Estadão on the Brazilian case:

Segundo a assessoria de imprensa da PRF, uma nova data só será marcada depois de a investigação comprovar se houve conivência dos organizadores, do Núcleo de Computação Eletrônica (NCE) da UFRJ. A previsão é que o novo concurso aconteça apenas no ano que vem, pois há a possibilidade de que a UFRJ, que ganhou a licitação para aplicar a prova, seja dispensada.

According to the federal prosecutor’s office, a new date will only be scheduled after an investigation into whether there was complicity on the part of the exam organizers, from the Electronic Computing Center (NCE) at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. It is predicted that the new exam will not take place until next year, since there is the possibility that UFRJ, which won the competitive contract to administer the test, may be dismissed.

Os procuradores regionais da República de São João de Meriti, município na Baixada Fluminense, Ana Paula Rodrigues e Antônio Cabral receberam de um informante o conjunto de provas que seria aplicada.

Regional federal prosecutors in São João de Meriti, in the Baixada Fluminense, received the entire content of the exam to be administered from an informant.

O professor do NCE Orlando Bastos Mendes, responsável por elaborar os gabaritos das questões, reconheceu o teor das questões, e até a formatação, como sendo iguais aquelas que seriam aplicadas no concurso.

NCE professor Orlando Bastos Mendes, who prepared the answer key, recognized the content of the questions, and their formatting, as identical to those that would be on the test.

For a similiar (murky, so far) incident, see also

On Gordillo, see

We have this face-off going on in New York now over public education, and I find that I am still not entirely clear where my sympathies lie.

It is not just an academic question, either. I have taught in public schools in my life and times. It was often a nightmarish experience. See also

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