Monday, November 15, 2010

Editorial: Oyster Bay's Attendance Policy

By Mariah Cody

The new attendance policy has been at the heart of controversy amongst Oyster Bay High School’s student body. Most students agree that some sort of an attendance policy should be implemented, but there are so many special cases sprinkled within the foundation of this new policy that it is virtually impossible for the procedure to being fully embraced.

Those students in band are getting punished for doing what they are in fact supposed to do: attend scheduled lessons. Students in sports and classes with field trips will inevitably miss some class periods, and are too being punished for simply participating in their school. Oyster Bay High School is competing in the Long Island Challenge this year, and being a challenge participant, this recognition will only add to my acquired absences.

Another aspect of the attendance policy that troubled me was what defined an accepted and unaccepted absence. Car trouble was on the list, for unaccepted absence. This means that if my car breaks down I am still responsible for getting to school on time. So I guess that if my car breaks down, I should proceed to run to school to avoid getting marked for a cut. Everyone knows the best conditions for learning is being covered in sweat.

The appeals process is another questionable procedure for this new attendance policy. After you acquire more than the maximum number of absences you must go through an appeals process if you are challenging your attendance record to get credit for the classes you have exceeded absences in. This is great, for those special cases (band, sickness, field trip attendant, sports participant etc.) you will now most likely miss more school to rally for credit in a class that you rightfully deserve.

Dr. O’Hara and Mr. Imperial attempted to appease us by saying that even with all of these absences counting against us; it will still leave room for sickness, without adding enough absences to surpass the accepted number of absences. This policy can only be truly tested with time. If Dr. O’Hara and Mr. Imperial are in fact correct then these problems that I have discussed, will soon be forgotten.

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