This bill has been amended

Bill S7088-2011

Relates to pre and post test reporting requirements, test site registration and sign in, and establishes crimes related to educational testing fraud

Relates to pre and post test reporting requirements, test site registration and sign in, and establishes crimes related to educational testing fraud.

Details

Actions

  • Jun 11, 2012: ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • Jun 6, 2012: 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • Jun 5, 2012: 1ST REPORT CAL.1092
  • Apr 27, 2012: REFERRED TO HIGHER EDUCATION

Meetings

Votes

VOTE: COMMITTEE VOTE: - Higher Education - Jun 5, 2012
Ayes (14): LaValle, Alesi, Flanagan, Griffo, Grisanti, Maziarz, Ritchie, Robach, Seward, Zeldin, Kennedy, Oppenheimer, Parker, Carlucci
Ayes W/R (3): Stavisky, Krueger, Serrano
Nays (1): Rivera

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S7088

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law, in relation to pre and post test reporting requirements and test site registration and sign in; and to amend the penal law, in relation to establishing the crimes forgery of an educational test, criminal facilitation of educational testing fraud, and scheme to defraud educational testing

PURPOSE: To amend the education law to authorize testing agencies to temporarily suspend a standardized test score and turn a case over to proper authorities upon a finding that substantial evidence exists to suspect that a test subject committed forgery of an education test and to report such information to the test subject's home high school and to certain colleges and universities; to require test subjects to provide certain forms of identification in order to sit for a standardized test and to amend the penal law to criminalize certain behavior in relation to cheating on an exam.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1: Amends section 340 of the education law to add four new definitions to Article 7A.

Section 2: Amends section 344 of the education law to clarify that test agencies can report the cancellation of a test pursuant to subdivision eight-a of section 344-b of the education law.

Section 3: Amends subdivision 3 of section 344-b of the education law to clarify that test agencies can report the cancellation of a test score.

Section 4: Amends section 344-b of the education law to add a new subdivision 5-a to authorize a test agency to temporarily suspend a test subject's score.

Section 5: Amends subdivision 6(c) and 7 of section 344-b of the education law to clarify that if a test agency temporarily suspends a test subject's test score and refers the case to the proper authorities, the test subject shall have an opportunity to make claims of innocents to the proper authorities.

Section 6: Amends section 344-b of the education law and adds two new sections, 8-a and 8-b in relation to temporary suspensions of test scores upon a finding that test subject may have committee forgery of an educational test and requires the test agency to refer the case to the proper authorities.

Section 7: Amends the education law to add a new section 344-d in relation to pre and post test reporting requirements and test site registration and sign in requirements.

Section 8: Amends the penal law to create the crime of forgery of an education test.

Section 9: Amends the penal law to add that a person would be guilty of criminal impersonation in the second degree if he/she impersonates another registered to take a standardized test or solicits, requests, commands, importunes or intentionally aids another person to engage in such conduct.

Section 10. Amends the penal law to create the crime of criminal facilitation of educational testing fraud.

Section 11. Amends the penal law to create the crime of scheme to defraud educational testing.

Section 12. Creates an oversight panel within the State Education Department's Office of Higher Education to review the policies and procedures of test agencies that administer standardized tests in New York State.

Section 13. Sets for the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION: This bill is necessary to create deterrents from cheating on post secondary standardized tests, to improve identification verification of those who take such exams in this state and to criminalize behaviors that rise to the level of fraud and criminal impersonation in relation to taking a standardized test.

In recent months, an SAT cheating scandal was discovered on Long Island. It was found that high school students were paying large sums of money to college students who falsified identifications and took the SA Ts for them. This scandal included up to 50 students, some .of who were middle men who connected the impersonating test takers with the high school students who had the ability to pay up to $3,600 for another to take the exam for them.

The Senate Standing Committee on Higher Education held hearings on this issue in October of 2011. It was discovered that lax test site identification procedures and no test taker reporting requirements; along with test taker's due process rights under the education law, allowed such egregious conduct to occur. NYS law specifically delineates what a testing agency is allowed to do upon the discovery of cheating. There is nothing in relation to the regulation of standardized tests that would be a deterrent from cheating and there are no specific criminal penalties with regard to educational fraud.

This bill would amend the sections of the education law that prevent testing agencies from reporting to students' home high schools and the colleges and universities to which such students applied if a test score is cancelled due to the discovery that such student cheated. In addition, this bill creates reporting requirements and criminal penalties.

Such deterrents will go a long way to prevent cheating on standardized tests in the future.

With the increasing number of college applicants fighting for limited spots, getting into the college of your choice has become more and more competitive. Therefore, there has been increased importance placed a student's SAT or ACT score. When a student cheats, such behavior has the potential to displace honest, hard working students from the most competitive colleges. Students who didn't earn and don't deserve such coveted placements should not have this unfair advantage.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New legislation.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None to the State.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the first November next succeeding the date on which it shall have become law.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 7088 IN SENATE April 27, 2012 ___________
Introduced by Sen. LAVALLE -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Higher Education AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to pre and post test reporting requirements and test site registration and sign in; and to amend the penal law, in relation to establishing the crimes forgery of an educational test, criminal facilitation of educational testing fraud, and scheme to defraud educational testing THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivision 3 of section 340 of the education law, as amended by chapter 813 of the laws of 1980, is amended and five new subdivisions 10, 11, 12, 13 and 14 are added to read as follows: 3. "Test subject" means an individual to whom a test is administered OR AN INDIVIDUAL WHO HAS REGISTERED TO TAKE A TEST. 10. "HOME HIGH SCHOOL" MEANS THE HIGH SCHOOL AT WHICH A TEST SUBJECT IS OR WAS A MATRICULATED STUDENT AT THE TIME OF TESTING. 11. "TESTING SITE" MEANS ANY LOCATION WHERE A STANDARDIZED TEST IS ADMINISTERED TO A TEST SUBJECT. 12. "TEST SITE PERSONNEL" MEANS A PERSON PRESENT AT A TESTING SITE WHO SIGNS IN TEST SUBJECTS WHO ARE REGISTERED TO TAKE THE TEST AT THAT SITE AND WHO OVERSEES THE ADMINISTRATION OF A STANDARDIZED TEST. FOR PURPOSES OF THIS DEFINITION, TESTING SITE PERSONNEL MAY INCLUDE, BUT NOT BE LIMITED TO, A PROCTOR, TEST CENTER SUPERVISOR, ASSISTANT SUPERVISOR OR A ROOM PROCTOR. EACH MAY HAVE A DIFFERENT ROLE IN TEST ADMINISTRATION OVERSIGHT. 13. "ACCEPTABLE PHOTO IDENTIFICATION" MEANS A SCHOOL IDENTIFICATION CARD, A SCHOOL IDENTIFICATION FORM PREPARED BY THE HOME HIGH SCHOOL, A STATE-ISSUED DRIVER'S LICENSE, A STATE-ISSUED NON-DRIVER'S LICENSE, A PASSPORT, A MILITARY IDENTIFICATION CARD OR A GOVERNMENT ISSUED IDEN- TIFICATION CARD. THE PHOTOGRAPH ON ANY SUCH IDENTIFICATION CARD MUST BE A CURRENT REPRESENTATION OF THE TEST TAKER'S IMAGE. 14. "PHOTO ADMISSION TICKET" MEANS A TICKET ASSIGNED TO A TEST REGIS- TRANT, UPON REGISTERING TO TAKE THE ACT ASSESSMENT (ACT) OR THE SCHOLAS-
TIC APTITUDE TEST (SAT) WHICH IS PRODUCED BY THE TEST AGENCY ACCORDING TO SUCH AGENCY'S RULES, REGULATIONS OR PROTOCOLS. S 2. Section 344 of the education law is amended by adding a new clos- ing paragraph to read as follows: NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO PREVENT THE TESTING AGENCY FROM REPORTING THE CANCELLATION OF A TEST SCORE PURSUANT TO SUBDIVISION EIGHT-A OF SECTION THREE HUNDRED FORTY-FOUR-B OF THIS ARTI- CLE. S 3. Paragraph (e) of subdivision 3 of section 344-b of the education law, as added by chapter 845 of the laws of 1992, is amended to read as follows: (e) the potential consequences which may result from the investi- gation, such as withholding or invalidating the test score; OR REPORTING THE CANCELLATION OF SUCH SCORE TO THE TEST SUBJECT'S HOME HIGH SCHOOL AND/OR ANY COLLEGES, UNIVERSITIES, OR OTHER ENTITIES WHO WERE DESIGNATED OR ARE OTHERWISE AUTHORIZED TO RECEIVE THE SCORE REPORT. S 4. Section 344-b of the education law is amended by adding a new subdivision 5-a to read as follows: 5-A. (A) IF THE TEST AGENCY FINDS SUBSTANTIAL EVIDENCE TO SUPPORT A FINDING THAT A TEST SUBJECT MAY HAVE COMMITTED FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST AS DEFINED IN SECTION 170.80 OF THE PENAL LAW, THE TEST AGENCY SHALL BE AUTHORIZED TO TEMPORARILY SUSPEND THE SCORE AND SHALL BE OBLI- GATED TO TURN SUCH TEST SUBJECT'S CASE OVER TO THE PROPER AUTHORITIES PURSUANT TO SUBDIVISION EIGHT-A OF THIS SECTION. (B) AT SUCH TIME, THE TEST AGENCY SHALL NOTIFY THE TEST SUBJECT OF THE DECISION TO TURN OVER THE CASE, AND THE AUTHORITIES TO WHOM THE CASE HAS BEEN REFERRED. S 5. Subdivision 6 and paragraph (c) of subdivision 7 of section 344-b of the education law, as added by chapter 845 of the laws of 1992, is amended to read as follows: 6. The test subject shall have thirty days following receipt of the notice by registered mail to respond to the notice of inauthenticity or irregularity, PROVIDED HOWEVER, IF THE TEST AGENCY HAS TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED SUCH TEST PURSUANT TO SUBDIVISION FIVE-A OF THIS SECTION, A TEST SUBJECT SHALL HAVE THE OPTION TO RAISE ANY CLAIM OR CLAIMS OF INNO- CENCE WITH THE PROPER AUTHORITIES ASSIGNED TO HIS OR HER CASE. (c) Nothing in this section precludes the parties from seeking resol- ution of the testing problems by either judicial review or arbitration. The test agency and the test subject shall make a good faith effort to complete an arbitration process in no more than thirty days after the election of such option, PROVIDED, HOWEVER, IF THE TEST AGENCY HAS TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED SUCH TEST PURSUANT TO SUBDIVISION FIVE-A OF THIS SECTION, A TEST SUBJECT SHALL HAVE THE OPTION TO TAKE UP ANY CLAIMS OF INNOCENCE WITH THE PROPER AUTHORITIES ASSIGNED TO HIS OR HER CASE. S 6. Subdivision 8 of section 344-b of the education law, as added by chapter 845 of the laws of 1992, is amended and two new subdivisions 8-a and 8-b are added to read as follows: 8. The test agency shall not release confidential information to any authorized test score recipients regarding a test subject under pending investigation, unless authorized to do so by the test subject OR AUTHOR- IZED TO DO SO PURSUANT TO SUBDIVISION EIGHT-A OF THIS SECTION. 8-A. WHEN A TEST AGENCY FINDS SUBSTANTIAL EVIDENCE TO SUPPORT A FIND- ING THAT A TEST SUBJECT MAY HAVE COMMITTED FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST AS DEFINED IN SECTION 170.80 OF THE PENAL LAW, THE TEST AGENCY SHALL BE AUTHORIZED TO TEMPORARILY SUSPEND THE SCORE AND SHALL BE OBLI- GATED TO TURN SUCH TEST SUBJECT OR TEST REGISTRANT OVER TO THE PROPER
AUTHORITIES. WHILE THE CASE IS PENDING BEFORE THE PROPER AUTHORITIES, THE TESTING AGENCY SHALL NOTIFY SUCH TEST SUBJECT OF THE DECISION TO TURN HIS OR HER CASE OVER TO THE PROPER AUTHORITIES, SHALL INFORM THE TEST SUBJECT'S HOME HIGH SCHOOL OF THE DECISION TO TURN SUCH CASE OVER TO THE PROPER AUTHORITIES AND SHALL INFORM ANY COLLEGES, UNIVERSITIES OR OTHER ENTITIES AUTHORIZED TO RECEIVE SUCH SCORE REPORT OF THE TEMPORARY SUSPENSION OF THE TEST SCORE. IF THE PROPER AUTHORITY LATER DETERMINES THAT THE TEST SUBJECT WAS NOT GUILTY OF FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST AS DEFINED IN SECTION 170.80 OF THE PENAL LAW, THE TEST AGENCY SHALL NOTIFY THE TEST SUBJECT'S HOME HIGH SCHOOL, LIFT THE TEMPORARY SUSPEN- SION AND REINSTATE THE SCORE AND REPORT SUCH SCORE TO ANY COLLEGES, UNIVERSITIES OR OTHERWISE AUTHORIZED RECIPIENTS. 8-B. ANY TEST SUBJECT WHO IS FOUND GUILTY OF FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST, IN ADDITION TO ANY PENALTIES UNDER THE PENAL LAW, SHALL NOT BE AUTHORIZED TO SIT FOR ANOTHER STANDARDIZED TEST WITHIN ONE YEAR FROM THE DATE OF CONVICTION. S 7. The education law is amended by adding a new section 344-d to read as follows: S 344-D. PRE AND POST TEST REPORTING REQUIREMENTS AND TESTING SITE REGISTRATION AND SIGN IN REQUIREMENTS. 1. THIS SECTION SHALL ONLY APPLY TO POST SECONDARY SCHOOL ADMISSION EXAMS SUCH AS THE SCHOLASTIC APTITUDE TEST (SAT) OR THE ACT ASSESSMENT (ACT). 2. (A) UPON REGISTERING TO SIT FOR THE SAT OR ACT A TEST SUBJECT SHALL REPORT TO THEIR HOME HIGH SCHOOL THE TESTING SITE AT WHICH THEY ARE REGISTERED TO TAKE THE EXAM; (B) UPON COMPLETION OF THE EXAM AND RECEIPT OF THEIR SCORE, THE TEST SUBJECT MUST REPORT SUCH SCORE TO THEIR HOME HIGH SCHOOL. 3. IN ORDER FOR A TEST SUBJECT TO SIT FOR SAT OR ACT THE TEST SUBJECT UPON SIGN IN, MUST PROVIDE TO THE APPROPRIATE TEST SITE PERSONNEL AT THE TESTING SITE, THE FOLLOWING: (A) IF A TEST SUBJECT IS REGISTERED TO TAKE AND IS TAKING THE TEST AT THEIR HOME HIGH SCHOOL OR IF THE TEST SUBJECT IS REGISTERED TO TAKE THE EXAM AND IS TAKING THE EXAM AT A SITE THAT IS NOT THE TEST SUBJECT'S HOME HIGH SCHOOL, THE TEST SUBJECT MUST PROVIDE ONE FORM OF ACCEPTABLE PHOTO IDENTIFICATION AND A PHOTO ADMISSION TICKET. (B) A TEST SUBJECT MUST PRE-REGISTER TO TAKE THE EXAM AND MUST TAKE THE EXAM AT THE TESTING SITE AT WHICH THEY ARE REGISTERED. WALK-INS TO A DIFFERENT SITE SHALL NOT BE ALLOWED TO SIT FOR THE EXAM. 4. NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO LIMIT ANY OTHER TEST DAY OR POST TEST DAY POLICIES AND PROCEDURES REQUIRED BY THE TEST AGEN- CY. S 8. The penal law is amended by adding a new section 170.80 to read as follows: S 170.80 FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST. A PERSON IS GUILTY OF FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST WHEN, WITH INTENT TO DEFRAUD, DECEIVE OR INJURE ANOTHER, HE OR SHE FALSELY MAKES, COMPLETES OR ALTERS AN APPLICATION, REGISTRATION OR EXAMINATION OF A STANDARDIZED TEST AS DEFINED BY SECTION THREE HUNDRED FORTY OF THE EDUCATION LAW; MISREPRESENTS HIS OR HER IDENTITY IN TAKING SUCH A STAND- ARDIZED TEST FOR OR ON BEHALF OF ANOTHER PERSON; OR SOLICITS, REQUESTS, COMMANDS, IMPORTUNES OR INTENTIONALLY AIDS ANOTHER PERSON TO ENGAGE IN SUCH CONDUCT. FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST IS A CLASS A MISDEMEANOR. S 9. Section 190.25 of the penal law is amended by adding a new subdi- vision 5 to read as follows:
5. IMPERSONATES ANOTHER PERSON WHO IS REGISTERED TO TAKE A STANDARD- IZED TEST AS DEFINED BY SECTION THREE HUNDRED FORTY OF THE EDUCATION LAW, TO TAKE SUCH EDUCATIONAL TEST, OR SOLICITS, REQUESTS, COMMANDS, IMPORTUNES OR INTENTIONALLY AIDS ANOTHER PERSON TO ENGAGE IN SUCH CONDUCT. S 10. The penal law is amended by adding a new section 170.85 to read as follows: S 170.85 CRIMINAL FACILITATION OF EDUCATIONAL TESTING FRAUD. A PERSON IS GUILTY OF CRIMINAL FACILITATION OF EDUCATIONAL TESTING FRAUD, WHEN BEING TWENTY ONE YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER, HE OR SHE PROVIDES A BENEFIT TO ANOTHER TO ENTICE THE OTHER TO COMMIT THE CRIME OF FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST PURSUANT TO SECTION 170.80 OF THIS ARTICLE, OR THE CRIME OF CRIMINAL IMPERSONATION IN THE SECOND DEGREE PURSUANT TO SUBDI- VISION FIVE OF SECTION 190.25 OF THIS TITLE. CRIMINAL FACILITATION OF EDUCATIONAL TESTING FRAUD IS A CLASS E FELO- NY. S 11. The penal law is amended by adding a new section 190.71 to read as follows: S 190.71 SCHEME TO DEFRAUD EDUCATIONAL TESTING. A PERSON IS GUILTY OF SCHEME TO DEFRAUD EDUCATIONAL TESTING WHEN HE OR SHE COMMITS THE CRIME OF FORGERY OF AN EDUCATIONAL TEST PURSUANT TO SECTION 170.80 OF THIS TITLE ON THREE OR MORE OCCASIONS; OR COMMITS THE CRIME OF CRIMINAL IMPERSONATION IN THE SECOND DEGREE PURSUANT TO SUBDI- VISION 5 OF SECTION 190.25 OF THIS ARTICLE, IMPERSONATING MORE THAN TWO OTHER PERSONS; OR COMMITS A COMBINATION OF THESE CRIMES INVOLVING THREE OR MORE DIFFERENT INCIDENTS OR THREE OR MORE OTHER IDENTITIES. SCHEME TO DEFRAUD EDUCATIONAL TESTING IS A CLASS E FELONY. S 12. a. Oversight panel. The commissioner of education shall estab- lish within the office of higher education, a testing integrity over- sight panel that shall review the policies and procedures of test agen- cies that administer post secondary standardized tests in New York state. b. Membership. The panel shall consist of three experts from the test- ing industry to be appointed by the commissioner of education and approved by a vote of the higher education committees in each house at a committee meeting designated by the chairs in each respective house. Each panel member shall serve for a four year term. The commissioner shall have the authority to remove a panel member if he or she deems it appropriate. c. Reporting. The panel shall annually report to the higher education subcommittee of the board of regents. Such report shall include but not be limited to: (i) a review of security procedures and any recommendations for improvement; (ii) the number of canceled test scores per year and the number of cases referred to the proper authorities as proscribed by this act; (iii) the number and type of convictions of any crimes created by this act; and (iv) a review of the test site personnel training procedures and any recommendations for improvement. d. Question review. The panel may also review a random sampling of previously released test questions to be provided to the panel by the test agencies to ensure they are fair and unbiased. e. Report to the higher education committees. Subsequent to the pres- entation of the report to the higher education subcommittee of the board
of regents, the oversight panel shall submit such report to the chairs of the higher education committees in each house. S 13. This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law.

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