CHS, reevaluate make-up work policy



Have you ever missed one day of school and felt like you have to spend the next week making up all the quizzes, tests and worksheets you missed?

The CHS makeup policy is supposed to help students handle this extra work, while still balancing their current school work. The current policy is that a student has however many days they missed plus one to get all of their makeup work turned in. But, this can be very difficult as many teachers expect students to make up all the work they missed in class and homework, while still keeping up with what the class is currently doing.

The current system is not effective because it causes more stress for students and makes making up work extremely difficult.

Missing just one day of school means making up around 45 minutes of classwork per period, as well as two nights of homework (one for the night they missed and one for the current night).
If a student is taking six academic classes out of their seven periods, this could mean hours of homework. This is too much for a student to juggle at once, especially if they are getting over an illness at the same time.

Because of the flaw in the policy, many students who take rigorous courses are very reluctant to take days off of school because they fear facing the makeup work. This causes kids to come to school when they are sick or otherwise under the weather, which can cause other students to catch viruses and in turn threatens the safety of CHS students’ health. Coming in sick also causes students to under-perform and lead to further health issues.

According to a Jan. 2 2016 New York Times article, “…doctors increasingly see children in early elementary school suffering from migraine headaches and ulcers. Many physicians see a clear connection to performance pressure.”

Making up assessments is yet another reason missing school can cause students intense stress. A few years ago, the CHS administration put the assessment schedule in place to prevent any student from having too many assessments on any given day, so students will not have to make up multiple tests from missing just one day of school. However, this schedule does not fulfill its purpose.

Of course, there are overlaps within testing days, but if a student was taking three science courses and a world language, both of which have testing days on Fridays, they could very well have four summative assessments on any given day.

Teachers from various departments sometimes schedule tests on the same day, and others are not as liberal with the extended time and require students to make up assessments the day they come back.
This could also cause students to have to make up multiple assessments at once for material they might have missed, multiplying their stress.

It can be said that a strict absence policy is necessary because students could easily abuse a lenient absence and makeup policy. The fear of makeup work encourages students to not miss school unless absolutely necessary. If it were easy to get excused from tests and quizzes, then students would skip classes where they had an assessment, and just get excused from it.

However, a more lenient policy would do more good than harm. If the policy strictly enforced that students have a certain amount of days to make up any work they missed, this would significantly lower the stress and pressure students face from missing school.

It would also prevent students from abusing the rule and skipping school to avoid tests because they would still have to complete the work one way or another. It would just give students more time to recover and learn what they missed.

It is normal for students to come to school with fevers because they have a test or cannot miss a certain class. In order to effectively encourage ill students to stay home and recover, the makeup policy needs to be implemented so that students do not have to face impossible levels of stress when they return to class.