As usual, Seth Godin nails it right on the head:
If we don’t slam this door shut, then everyone will do it…
This is really why we lock everything out in schools, isn’t it? In K-12, we like to rule by exception rather than dealing with exceptions individually. We’re doubtful of our ability to stop the slippery slope.
Had this issue today, in fact. Pep assembly. Student Council students miss two class periods to setup and clean-up. This meant some of them missed a test in science class. Teacher says to the students later that afternoon, “Sorry. If you have a pre-arranged school policy, tests need to be taken in advance of the absence. You get a zero.”
After all – that’s what it says in the school handbook. And, of course, the spirit and intent of the school handbook is to keep good, involved kids from doing well in their classes.
I’m left in the unfortunate position of fielding the parent phone calls on this one…
RE: the above… The teacher said, “If you have a prearranged school ABSENCE, tests need to be taken in advance of the absence.”
All policies should have. “At the principal’s discretion.” Avoids so many problems especially for the principal.