Diary of a Teacher (DoT) with Titilope Ogundele


I remember when I was writing WAEC, many of my classmates came into the exams hall with ‘expo’ and some other ‘contraband’. In fact, I knew some students smuggled textbooks into the exams hall.

Quite a handful of us was sane enough not to take any implicating material to the exams hall; we still had some self-confidence. We needed to preserve our integrity.

One of those days, the day we wrote Mathematics, I was tempted to discard my integrity. I didn’t really prepare for Maths; I felt it was not one of the courses I needed for the course I wanted to study. My undoing!

When I got the questions, I became uncomfortable. I started sweating from my palms and my body system changed. Chai, na me do myself! I failed to prepare; so, I prepared to fail.

Meanwhile, I knew many of my classmates had ‘prepared answers’ they brought into the exams hall; I could have asked them for ‘help’ and they would have been happy to come to my rescue. But nah, I wasn’t going to stoop so low. Was that pride? It’s called integrity.

One of my classmates noticed my predicament and she offered to help me out; she asked if I wanted the ‘expo’ she had on her, but I said no. Was I stupid?

How did I sort myself out? I picked answers at random; I sang ‘eeny meeny miny mo’ and picked my answers.

Did I pass the exam? No! I failed. Do I regret my action? No, I don’t. I opted for failure instead of cheating.

And you know what? Now, I can raise my head high and tell my students I didn’t cheat when I wrote WAEC. Can you do the same?

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