Tardies add up, and so do the consequences. However, if a student’s parent notifies the school about an absence, they will be excused with little consequence. Most tardies are only between the span of a second to 10 minutes, so it is ridiculous how being tardy has more consequences than being absent.
Once teachers fill out a referral for students with one to 10 tardies, detention slips are sent out so the students can make up for lost class time. However, students are hardly productive during detention and end up wasting their time.
Students with excused absences, on the other hand, are not required to serve academic make up, unless they have exceeded a total of 13 days of being absent. Even if the student does surpass the 13 days, severe punishments such as being sent to court or reported to the police are not usually enforced. These students basically have the same punishments as tardy students, but the punishments are not enforced until the student is excessively absent.
In addition, tardy sweeps occur, where campus security distributes detention slips to tardy students, regardless of how many tardies that student has. Tardy sweeps are counterproductive as they prevent students from getting to class. Instead of tardy sweeps, the student’s teacher should simply mark them as tardy.
Some teachers also have their own punishments for tardy students. Teachers may keep track of students’ attendance and lower students’ citizenship grades if they exceed a certain amount of tardies. Other teachers conduct their own detentions and give them to their students for arriving late. Tardy students take a hit to their grades, whereas there is no other consequence than having to catch up on work if they were absent and excused.
Although some type of consequence is necessary, detention is counterproductive and unreasonable. Considering it is an hour long with an insufficient amount of seats, it is nearly impossible to make up “academic time.” The Student Employee Welfare (SEW) occasionally calls the student’s fourth period class to pull the student 10 minutes before class ends for lunch detention. It is ironic to pull students out of class to make up “academic time,” especially since students were already in class. Additionally, the SEW operator does not know that students are allowed to get lunch, which as a result, students are not informed and are deprived from their nutrition.
Overall, the administration desperately needs to revamp the entire system. Lunch detentions, tardy sweeps, and teachers creating their own punishments should be abolished. After school detention should be held in the library so students can access resources to assist them on assignments. In addition, the administration should make an effort to make it easier for students to be on time. For instance, the parking lot should be much more efficient, the north parking lot should be open for student drop offs, and staff should not do maintenance on the restrooms during passing period.