Excessive Absences or Excessive Control?


Lucy Miller

As more students this year are called out for “excessive absences” and are threatened with Saturday school, administration only increases their threats. The rules they set in the beginning of the year have already started to wear down the student body’s patience.

In this day and age, everyone has lived through a pandemic and struggled with sicknesses and colds. It would be assumed that schools and places of work are more accommodating to those staying home sick. But, an opinion shared between many students at CCHS this year is that administration and select teachers are doing the opposite.

There was a noticeable shift in the way students are being treated this year. Nicole Nazemnikova ‘24 remarks that, “They completely shut me off and didn’t reply” when she requested extensions and help from a teacher after an extended absence due to illness. “The fact that they didn’t really give me the time to complete those assignments was really the annoying part”

Alongside these personal experiences, many students have cited an impersonal automatic email sent to those with an “excessive amount of absences” as their reason for questioning administration.

The way the email is phrased has both parents and students on the receiving end feeling patronized. An anonymous parent shares that “ I was stunned to receive an email from CCHS chastising our family for absences which were excused. I also, sadly, opted to send my child to school the next day even though my child was ill and experiencing worrisome symptoms.”

The real problem that stems from this is how diseases are being spread at school as a result of these rules. Coughs and sniffles can be heard in the background of every class and, as fall and winter approach, the weather will only make it worse.

It is understandable that the administration wants to encourage student participation in school and discourage unnecessary absences. But the question should be asked, is this control helping the school community in any way? Or is the administration’s definition of excessive absences, slightly excessive itself?