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French cribbing

Homework cheats in France have a new weapon in their arsenal, with the launch last week of French website faismesdevoirs.com, which translates to "domyhomework.com".

While homework help websites may not be an entirely novel idea, founder Stephane Boukris claims to have found a gap in the market.

His website offers pupils a wide range of homework help, which is priced accordingly: 5 euros will buy the answers to simple maths problems, whereas 80 euros will afford a full end-of-year presentation (complete with slides and speaking notes) - all the work being done by older students.

Parents and teachers are naturally outraged by the business. Agathe Field, an English teacher at a secondary school in a suburb of Paris says: "It is shocking. It defeats the purpose of education, which is that the pupils need to learn for themselves how to do the work.

"It turns them into consumers. The message is that for the right price you can get the results you want. It's nonsense."

But founder Mr Boukris defends his venture, claiming that through the inclusion of annotations: "We're not just giving them the fish, we are teaching them how to fish."

Which gives a new meaning to netting the right grades.

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