Dr. Compton acknowledged that the investigation had caused distress on campus. But he said Geisel, founded in 1797 and one of the nation’s oldest medical schools, was obligated to hold its students accountable.

“We take academic integrity very seriously,” he said. “We wouldn’t want people to be able to be eligible for a medical license without really having the appropriate training.”

Instructure, the company that owns Canvas, did not return requests for comment.

In January, a faculty member reported possible cheating during remote exams, Dr. Compton said. Geisel opened an investigation.

To hinder online cheating, Geisel requires students to turn on ExamSoft — a separate tool that prevents them from looking up study materials during tests — on the laptop or tablet on which they take exams. The school also requires students to keep a backup device nearby. The faculty member’s report made administrators concerned that some students may have used their backup device to look at course material on Canvas while taking tests on their primary device.

administrators held a virtual forum and were barraged with questions about the investigation. The conduct review committee then issued decisions in 10 of the cases, telling several students that they would be expelled, suspending others and requiring some to retake courses or repeat a year of school at a cost of nearly $70,000.

Many on campus were outraged. On April 21, dozens of students in white lab coats gathered in the rain in front of Dr. Compton’s office to protest. Some held signs that said “BELIEVE YOUR STUDENTS” and “DUE PROCESS FOR ALL” in indigo letters, which dissolved in the rain into blue splotches.

Several students said they were now so afraid of being unfairly targeted in a data-mining dragnet that they had pushed the medical school to offer in-person exams with human proctors. Others said they had advised prospective medical students against coming to Dartmouth.

“Some students have built their whole lives around medical school and now they’re being thrown out like they’re worthless,” said Meredith Ryan, a fourth-year medical student not connected to the investigation.

That same day, more than two dozen members of Dartmouth’s faculty wrote a letter to Dr. Compton saying that the cheating inquiry had created “deep mistrust” on campus and that the school should “make amends with the students falsely accused.”

In an email to students and faculty a week later, Dr. Compton apologized that Geisel’s handling of the cases had “added to the already high levels of stress and alienation” of the pandemic and said the school was working to improve its procedures.

The medical school has already made one change that could reduce the risk of false cheating allegations. For remote exams, new guidelines said, students are now “expected to log out of Canvas on all devices prior to testing.”

Mr. Zhang, the first-year student, said the investigation had shaken his faith in an institution he loves. He had decided to become a doctor, he said, to address disparities in health care access after he won a fellowship as a Dartmouth undergraduate to study medicine in Tanzania.

Mr. Zhang said he felt compelled to speak publicly to help reform a process he found traumatizing.

“I’m terrified,” he said. “But if me speaking up means that there’s at least one student in the future who doesn’t have to feel the way that I did, then it’s all worthwhile.”

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Are Your Illegal Drugs Pure? New Zealand Will Check Them for You.

According to the most recent data from the Ministry of Health, around 9 percent of New Zealanders have used an illicit drug in the past year, with cannabis the most popular. Synthetic cannabis is a common problem, with more than 40 deaths associated with the drug reported in 2018. (The country narrowly voted against legalizing marijuana in a referendum last year.) Drugs are the third most common reason young people are kicked out of school.

While New Zealand has long struggled with methamphetamine abuse, party drugs are increasingly common. In 2019, the New Zealand police seized more than two million Ecstasy tablets and their equivalents, up 560 percent from 2018.

It is these party drugs in particular that have resulted in injury or death, sometimes as a result of people taking mislabeled or contaminated drugs. This year, KnowYourStuff received almost 1,000 messages from festivalgoers who reported atypical reactions to drugs sold to them as MDMA, including paranoia, seizures, severe nausea and days of insomnia. The drugs are believed to have been contaminated with synthetic cathinones.

Speaking in Parliament last year, Andrew Little, the minister of health, emphasized that the current New Zealand government saw drug policy as a health matter rather than a criminal one.

A prosecution-led approach has not worked, he said, adding: “It’s not changing. If we want to change behaviors, then we’ve got to take a different approach.”

The data is spotty, but promising.

A survey from Victoria University found that 68 percent of surveyed festivalgoers who used the testing services changed their behavior, with some reducing the amount they took while others disposed of their drugs altogether.

A similar study held at a festival in Canberra, Australia, in 2019 found that “all those who had a very dangerous substance detected disposed of that drug in the amnesty bin.”

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N.Y.C. public school students can opt back in to standardized testing this year.

Students in New York City’s public school system, the largest district in the United States, will be able to take standardized tests this year, a process that has been drastically disrupted because of the pandemic. For the first time, New York City will ask families to opt in to state math and English exams, which all students in grades three through eight are typically asked to take during the spring. Last year, those exams were canceled altogether when city schools were shuttered as New York became a global center of the pandemic.

Though some city and state education officials have sought a waiver from the federal government to cancel the exams again this year, President Biden’s administration is requiring states to offer testing. New York’s solution — asking parents to opt their children in to take the test — will no doubt mean that smaller numbers of students will sit for the exams this year compared with numbers of previous years.

The smaller test score data will significantly disrupt at least two years of state testing, which will make it difficult to track student progress over time on those exams. It is not clear whether eighth graders applying to academically selective high schools will need test scores for admission.

A relatively small percentage of city students refuse the exams each year, as part of a national test refusal movement known as opt out. Students learning in-person and remotely who choose to participate in standardized testing will report to their school buildings during their scheduled exam over a range of dates in April and May.

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