The senior exemption policy is one of the few privileges that seniors have over the rest of the student body. If a student has an A in a class he/she can miss up to 3 days of school, two absences for a B and one absence for a C to miss the class period’s exam.
Until this year, there have not been any issues with this policy. However this year, administration offered a “Waiver Request” form where Mr. Lyons would look over why seniors missed days and evaluate if they should still take their exams.
Some seniors who had been coming to school sick were maddened at the fact that this option was being considered. I know that I was–I had come to school sick, had a tough schedule and managed to get it all done. My attitude was if I could do it, why couldn’t you?
Mr. Lyons went to a principal’s meeting where principals from other schools were allowing waiver request forms.
“I decided to allow the waiver request form because other schools were doing it as well,” he said. “I don’t think that it would be fair to make the seniors take their exams, if they didn’t have to if they went to another school.”
However, Mr. Lyons received a mere 24 request forms. Nine of those forms were approved.
“I only approved absences that were due to swine flu, and up to two days for college visits,” said Mr. Lyons. “I tried to evaluate each one and be fair.”
Although more seniors were subjected to take their exams, most understood why. “I got half of my absences approved. I didn’t have a doctor’s note for a few days, so I had to take my exams,” said Jessika Byrd, senior.
Mr. Lyons advises to come to school next semester because a waiver request form at the end of the semester will not be offered.