Academic Integrity

Watchung Hills Regional High School is committed to developing students of character.  Guided by core values of honor and responsibility, the faculty does its best to model ethical behavior and help students make morally sound decisions. When students come to realize the significance of these values and embrace them as guiding principles for their conduct, a culture of honesty grows and shapes the school community. 

  

The goal of this policy, then, is to help students avoid academic dishonesty, which is defined broadly as any attempt to give, receive, or otherwise use any form of unauthorized assistance or any attempt to gain an unfair advantage when completing any type of academic work. Teachers do their best to make expectations on all assignments clear, but students are responsible for asking questions when unsure about any assignment guideline. Seeking clarification helps prevent academic dishonesty. 

Types of conduct that expressly fall within this category include but are not limited to the following:

  • Giving or receiving answers to homework
  • Giving or receiving answers to questions on tests or quizzes
  • Reporting to another student the content of a test or quiz
  • Using unauthorized materials that give a student an unfair advantage on a test, quiz, or other assessment
  • Taking credit for work that was completed by someone else, and this includes failing to represent honestly the extent of participation in a group project
  • Taking information from any source that is not properly attributed; or
  • Working with others on an assignment that was meant to be done individually

At Watchung Hills Regional High School, we teach students to recognize the difference between their own work and the work of others, the proper way to cite legitimate sources, and the importance of honestly completing assignments. As a result, we expect students to submit original work and properly cite the ideas of others.

When a teacher or administrator determines that a student has engaged in academic dishonesty, the following consequences will be imposed.  Incidents are counted across the subject areas and are not limited to specific courses or academic disciplines. For example, if a student violates the policy in English and subsequently in math, the incident in the math course is the second offense.

First Offense

  • The teacher will assign a grade penalty;
  • The teacher will notify the parent or guardian as soon as possible;
  • The teacher will notify the department supervisor and file a report of misconduct;
  • The student, teacher, supervisor, and vice principal will meet to discuss the conduct and consider ways to avoid making poor decisions in the future. The student's parents are welcome to attend the meeting.
Second Offense
  • The student will be assigned a zero for the assignment;
  • The teacher will notify the parent or guardian as soon as possible;
  • The teacher will notify the department supervisor, principal, and the guidance counselor and file a report of misconduct.
  • The student, supervisor, and vice principal will meet to discuss the conduct and consider ways to avoid making poor decisions in the future.  A parent must attend that meeting; 
  • The student will not be eligible for any chapter of a school-sponsored honor society; and
  • Additional discipline in the form of central detentions, Saturday detentions, or other appropriate consequences will be imposed.
Third Offense  
  • The student will be assigned a zero for the assignment;
  • The teacher will notify the parent or guardian as soon as possible.
  • The parent and student must attend a meeting with the principal, guidance counselor, supervisor, and teacher to review the misconduct; and
  • The student may lose credit in the course where the offense occurred.