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Policy Title: Official Student Absence Policy

University Policy 3120

Download a Printable Version of Policy 3120

Effective Date

April 2001

Last Revision Date

July 2019

Responsible Party

Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs, (208) 426-1202

Scope and Audience

This policy applies to all University instructors, activity sponsors, and students.

1. Policy Purpose

To establish policy concerning student absences for official University-recognized activities.

2. Policy Statement

a.  Students are granted “official absence” from class when they document, as described in Section 3.1.d, participation in an official, University-recognized activity.

b.  “Official absences” shall not be counted against any absence limits set in the course syllabus.

c.  Official University-recognized activities include those events scheduled by athletics, band, forensics, dance, music, theatre, and other events designated as official by an authority as determined by the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management.

d.  Official University-recognized activities also include the observance of any religious holiday listed on the University’s published calendar of religious observances, as well as other observances brought to the attention of the Provost’s Office.

3. Responsibilities and Procedures

3.1 Student

“Official absence” excuses the student only from attending class and other formal instruction during the absence. Students have both the right and the responsibility:

a.  To make up any work missed during their official absence;

b.  To make up examinations given during their official absence;

c.  To have the same privileges as other students in the class, and

d.  To provide the instructor with written notification of the official absence at least ten (10) days in advance of the absence (see Section 2.c). Written notification must either be prepared by the activity sponsor, or the notification must refer to specific dates on the University’s published calendar of religious observances, or the notification must refer to another observance that has been referred to the Provost’s Office (see Section 2.d).

3.2 Faculty

Faculty have the responsibility:

a.  To refer to the policy on course syllabi;

b.  To excuse a student from attending class or other formal instruction during the official absence;

c.  To not penalize a student for such absence;

d.  To allow a student to make up any work missed during his or her official absence;

e.  To preserve the same privileges as other students have in the class; and

f.  Times for make-up examinations and similar work are to be determined no later than two days prior to the date of the absence. Make-up work or examinations will be scheduled at times mutually convenient for the student and the instructor.

3.3 Activity Sponsor

Activity sponsors (athletics, band, dance, etc.) have the responsibility:

a.  To prepare written notification on behalf of the participating students on official University stationery with dates and approximate departure and return times for “official absence.”

b.  The activity sponsor and the student are jointly responsible for timely delivery of the notice. Failure to deliver the notice at least ten (10) days in advance can jeopardize the student’s “official absence” request.

3.4 Department Heads and Deans

Academic department heads and deans are responsible for ensuring faculty are apprised of this policy. Non-adherence to this policy will be reflected in the performance evaluation of administrative personnel responsible for promulgating this policy, or faculty responsible for implementing it, as appropriate.

4. Related Information

Religious Observances Calendar (Office of the Registrar)

Revision History

July 2019