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The Hornet's Buzz

Why attendance matters

Have you missed more than 10 days of school over a semester? Have you ever been late to school? Have you ever woken up late and decided today was not a good day to attend school? Have you ever called in sick when you weren’t sick? Have you ever skipped a class, just because? Do you know someone who has?


Thirty out of thirty students at Northtown answered yes to one or more of these questions.

Many students wake up almost every morning dreading coming to school in time for the bell. The passion to attend school on time is not present, and because of the attendance policy, once students are late, they skip the entire class.

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The essential question is, why does attendance even matter?

According to the group of students who attended the first “taking it to the schools”, it doesn’t. Students feel that school days are getting to be the same every day, and nothing is interesting anymore.

To add to the problem, the attendance policy here states that once a student is late three times they receive a detention, after the detention, they receive a in- school- suspension.

A typical in-school-suspension has the students together in one room, under supervision, but basically they can do as they please. Many say they go to sleep, bring games, or just text.

The problem with fixing students opinion on attendance is fixing the policy. In–school suspension is not a punishment anymore. It is a place for sleep, relaxation, and no homework. This says, “hey if you don’t come to class again, I will take you out of class and put you in a room where you will not hear my lessons anyway”.

There needs to be a policy for coming to class late, but by threatening to place a student who actually wants to learn in in-school-suspension, they will just skip the entire class instead of coming late a fourth time. And by placing a student who doesn’t want to learn in in-school-suspension, it does them a favor.

But I realize the entire blame can not be placed upon the policy. The purpose of attending school should be understood by all students.

The purpose of attending high school is to further educate and prepare a student to enter college and future work, where a student is on their own. In order to succeed in high school, one has to comprehend, analyze, and then test over many different subjects.

The facts are simple. Missing a class means missing a lesson, which means missing things that will not be repeated. Missing a class repeatedly only makes the hole deeper and now it is up to the student to come in and get extra help. When a student misses a class in high school, it is up to the student and sometimes a teacher who plans to stay later to help.

But in college, no one is going to hold a student’s hand. Here is a wake up call, college professors do not take roll in college. Shocker, isn’t it?

In college a student has the freedom that was not necessarily given to them in high school. The want to go to class is entirely up to the student. The professors will still pick up their check for teaching the class whether the student is there or not.

Attendance is not something students can blow off each time they feel like it. No one really wants to come to school at 7:25 everyday. Even teachers sometimes wish they could sleep in, but teachers show up. The reason being, it is their job.

High school attendance can also be an example of job after schooling. A person’s job might allow a couple of “sick” days, but these days are normally limited and once they have passed the limit, they must show up to work, or be fired.

I understand that stuff happens. High school is full of emotions, high stress levels, and accidents. Everyone needs that day off, but don’t make it into a habit. It is a horrible habit to have, and a hard one to break.

Waking up late and deciding not to go to school is the wrong choice, especially in college.

Basically, the saying “better late than never” is true in this case.

Go to school.

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