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Chapter 43-Part 1

The bell for the morning self-study rang, echoing throughout the entire building. Outside, a teacher’s voice reprimanded students from his class for still being outside eating buns when everyone else was already in class.

Teacher Qiao had been in a continuous state of confusion. To be honest, as a teacher, Teacher Qiao didn’t think he could be frightened by his own students.

But this time, he was genuinely a bit startled.

Yesterday afternoon, several teachers from the school went to the district to pick up the exam papers and report cards. Teacher Qiao wasn’t assigned, so he rested at home. However, in the evening, Teacher Qiao suddenly received a call from Director Meng.

And it was urgent for him to come to the school immediately.

Teacher Qiao was taken aback, thinking something serious had happened. Without saying a word, he drove to the school.

It wasn’t until he entered Director Meng’s office and found several other teachers present that he realized something was up. When they saw him, their eyes lit up.

Teacher Qiao asked uncertainly, “Director, what’s going on?”

“Come, take a look at this.” Director Meng directly called him over and handed him a form.

Without suspicion, Teacher Qiao reached out and took the form. As he looked down, he felt a shock throughout his body.

Even when Teacher Qiao was temporarily appointed as the homeroom teacher for the troublesome class of the second year, he wasn’t as shocked.

Because the first name on the form was Shen Zhi.

As he glanced down further, he felt his breath hitch. It was as if lightning had struck him directly from the sky.

The name of the second student in the second grade was also familiar to him.

Ji Ran.

Teacher Qiao was stunned for a while, and he suddenly whispered, “There are also two students named Shen Zhi and Ji Ran in Class One and Class Two, right?”

His voice was quite low, with a cautious feeling, as within the scope of his thinking, only such a coincidence could explain the current situation.

Several teachers waiting for his response burst into laughter when they heard him say that.

Director Meng didn’t find it amusing; he directly said, “Let me tell you, don’t think this matter is funny. The vice principal of the neighboring school just called me to ask about this.”

“What did they ask?”

“Shen Zhi’s name is known even to the neighboring school. Who doesn’t know his grades? Now, suddenly going from last place in the grade to first place, do you believe it?” Director Meng couldn’t help but scold the teacher who asked the question.

Talking about this matter made Director Meng angry.

It’s true that Shen Zhi’s family had donated a lot of things to 4th Middle school before. Although 4th Middle school itself had abundant resources, which school leader would reject money? Students at 4th Middle School also had varying family backgrounds, including some from impoverished families.

The school leadership had always attached importance to this.

During a previous meeting with the director of the affiliated school, they even joked openly and sarcastically about their school, bending over backward for these influential families. So, Shen Zhi’s name was indeed known to them.

He was one of those troublesome students who consistently ranked last in exams.

Therefore, when the vice principal of the affiliated school called, he directly expressed suspicion of cheating in this exam. He assured that he would report this matter to the district education bureau and not let it go easily.

In this district-wide exam, the top ten students all received scholarships.

The vice principal of the affiliated school bluntly stated that he couldn’t let some people illegitimately snatch the fruits of victory from those hardworking classmates.

Listening to these words, it seemed like they were suspecting Shen Zhi and Ji Ran of cheating, and even speculating that their school deliberately leaked the answers.

Teacher Qiao frowned, “But if it’s cheating, the scores shouldn’t have increased so much.”

Cheating in exams has been prevalent throughout history, even during the imperial examinations. There have been many cases of cheating. However, simple cheating usually involves copying from nearby desks.

But Shen Zhi took the exam in the last-place examination room, where all the students were at the bottom of the grade. Even if they were allowed to cheat openly, they couldn’t achieve such high scores.

Seven hundred points! If they could score that high in the college entrance exam, getting into top universities like Tsinghua and Peking University wouldn’t be a problem.

Moreover, this mid-term exam had innovative and challenging questions, meaning tricky. As a result, the overall scores in the district were not very high.

The affiliated school also had a student who scored above 700 points, sharing the second place with Ji Ran.

Shen Zhi was the top scorer in the district-wide joint exam.

“It’s probably the fear that the answers were leaked in advance,” Director Meng said in frustration, looking around at everyone. He helplessly asked, “Do you think it’s possible?”

Several teachers looked at each other, but no one spoke.

It wasn’t until teacher Qiao whispered, “Director Meng, what if they genuinely took the exam themselves?”

Ji Ran bit her lip and looked at the homeroom teacher on the opposite side. It was only then that she noticed teacher Qiao didn’t seem too pleased. She thought for a moment and asked, “Teacher, did you call us here for something specific?”

Calling them over before the morning self-study likely wasn’t just to have them check their scores.

Teacher Qiao sighed, choosing their words carefully, “It’s not that we don’t believe you, but the difference in scores between this exam and the previous monthly exam is quite significant…”

They remained humble, preparing to say something like a gap that couldn’t be bridged even by the Himalayas and the Mariana Trench.

Shen Zhi nodded, speaking nonchalantly, “Did Director Meng trouble you?”

The title of grade director probably left an indelible impression on every high school student’s mind.

Teacher Qiao immediately waved their hands, “Not really. It’s just that you also need to understand, this was a district-wide joint exam. The sudden significant improvement in your scores has caused some misunderstandings among teachers from other schools. So, I hope you can tell us why you did so well this time.”


That was indeed a good question.



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