Monday, June 07, 2004

How Dumb Can Ya Get?

Dull as dishwater, forgettable, and often impossible to hear from the cheap seats....these are things one expects from high school commencement addresses.

What you don't expect is plagiarism.

Orange County is now having to cope with the fact that a recent address was lifted in large chunks from a speech found on the internet.

During his speech at the Orange County High School Graduation in May, Orange County School Board Chairman, Keith Cook, delivered a speech that was largely made up of excerpts from a 1998 speech given by then Sec of H&HS, Donna Shalala.

At first, Mr. Cook said that he had written the speech. Then, when confronted with the Shalala comparison, he admitted that he had found the speech on the internet and thought it was a generic speech.

Generic speech? Would a student be able to get away with that excuse???

Mr. Cook said that he would have cited Shalala, if he'd known that the speech was hers.

The way I remember it, that excuse doesn't wash for students. Use of material without proper citation ought to get this guy a big, fat "F"!

From all I've heard on the local news, Mr. Cook has said that he has no plans to step down from his post.

Great message to send the high school grads off with, isn't it?

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