Sick or unprepared? The rationale of student ditching

Lexi Babich, asst. features editor

Waking up to the obnoxiously loud alarm clock so she can get ready for school,  junior Makenzie Evans* realizes that she completely forgot to study for another one of her tests. Many students would rather skip class than face the prospects of a daunting “F” on their gradebook, Evans said. Turning to her last resort, Evans successfully asks her mom to call her out.

Most of the time when calling their children out of class, parents tend to say that they have an appointment or aren’t feeling very well, Ronald Bean, assistant principal and dean of students, said. Bean added that few call their child out for being unprepared.

“We have a number of parents that [allow] kids [to skip] a class because they weren’t prepared or didn’t do the homework,” Bean said. “We have parents that do, but it’s hard for us to figure out unless we catch the student leaving the building.”

Junior Danyelle Camero* said that she got the idea to get called out of classes  from other students at South. Camero was called out of classes because of her incomplete homework and lack of studying.

“A couple of the kids here were the ones who gave me the idea of not going to class,” Camero said. “I would skip class when we would have a test that I wasn’t prepared for or homework that I forgot to do.”

Evans missed seven physics classes this year, with some being unexcused absenses, because she said physics is her most difficult class. Even though Evans said that there may be some helpful teachers at South, some teachers tend to give up on students, which impacts a student’s effort.

“For me to [want to] go to class, I need a teacher that’s more willing to help their students,” Evans said. “There are some amazing teachers in this school but some of them give up on a few of their kids and it makes them lose interest in the subject.”

When students ask their parents to call them out for a class because they are unprepared, it is unfair to the other students who did not get to take the test later, Bean said. It is a student’s responsibility to tell their teacher about unpreparedness.

“I believe that our teachers give kids a lot of notice in terms of when tests and projects are due,” Bean said. “For [someone] to say, ‘Hey, Mom, will you call in for me because I’m not ready to take this test,’ I don’t think [is] fair to the other kids in the class. I think if you’re not prepared to take a test or you need an extension on an assignment, it’s your responsibility to go and speak to that teacher beforehand.

*Names have been changed.