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Girl Cheating in Test

My Ethical Dilemma

You are at a really important test and you see this girl next to you copying your answers. You are an A student and school comes particularly easy for you. This girl is a really bad student and on all of her tests she has done extremely poorly. School is particularly hard for this girl.

You could do three different things. You could tell the teacher that she cheated off of you and get her in trouble and a zero on the test. You could let her get away with it and get her first good mark on a test. By letting her cheating go unnoticed you are not losing anything. Your mark will be the same either way. You could tell the girl that you know she cheated off of you and tell her not to do it again or you will go to the teacher the next time it happens.

Can you please tell me what Jewish law believes the girl should do?

Answer:

There is no clear cut “Jewish Law” answer for this case.

On the one hand, allowing her to cheat is helping her do something wrong, which one should of course generally avoid.

On the other hand, telling the teacher and getting the girl in trouble is unethical in a classroom setting — being the class snitch is not a positive thing.

I would go over to the girl, mention that you saw she needed assistance in doing the test, and offer her to study together, or to help her out in another way.

Best wishes.

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