Class Absences

Number: 

1.8 (printable version)

Policy/Operational Procedure Name:

Class Absences

Sponsor:

Dr. Susan Paris
Vice President/Chief Academic Officer, Academics and Guided Career Pathways

Custodian:

Academics and Guided Career Pathways

Effective Date(s):

September 2010; November 1, 2017 (revision); January 26, 2018 (revision)

Next Review Date:

2018-2019

Location:

durhamtech.edu/policies-and-procedures/class-absences

Citation:

23 NCAC 2C .02131B SBCCC 500.1

 

Policy Statement

The focus of Durham Technical Community College’s Student Learning and Instructional Services is effective student learning for career and personal growth. To this end, faculty and staff are available to work closely with students from the point of application for admission through the progression of courses to completion of studies at the college. Regular attendance is required for students to complete all course requirements and receive the optimum benefit of instruction.

Procedure

For students who have officially entered the course, absences are calculated from the first class meeting, not from the student’s first attendance date. Hence, students entering late may have already accumulated part of the absence limit which varies according to the contact hours of the class. 

Tardiness and Early Departure 

Students should be on time for each class session and should be prepared to remain for the full duration of the class. Tardiness or early departure from class that results in the student missing at least twenty (20) percent of the instructional session may be considered an absence. Chronic tardiness and/or leaving class early may adversely affect the student’s course grade and may cause the student to receive a grade of “F."

Excused Absences 

An excused absence is defined as a planned absence. Durham Tech students are allowed one (1) excused absence per class per term for a planned event or observance. Students who wish to use an excused absence must submit an Excused Absence Notification form and any supporting documentation at least fourteen (14) calendar days in advance of the scheduled absence date. Students who wish to use an excused absence for military service must submit a Military Service Excused Absence Notification form and any supporting documentation as soon as possible once dates of absence are known and supporting documentation is available. Students who wish to use an excused absence for pregnancy or childbirth must submit a Pregnancy/Childbirth Excused Absence Notification form and any supporting documentation as soon as possible once dates of absence are known and supporting documentation is available. 

All class work missed due to an excused absence must be made up. The instructor, in consultation with the student, will identify a deadline for submission of the work that is appropriate to the requirements of the class but no later than five (5) working days after the day of the scheduled absence.

  • Religious Observances – The State Board of Community Colleges (SBCC) requires each community college to adopt a policy that authorizes a minimum of two excused absences each academic year for religious observances required by the faith of a student. The college shall provide the student the opportunity to make up any tests or other work missed due to an excused absence for a religious observance.
  • Military Service – The State Board of Community Colleges (SBCC) requires each community college to adopt a policy to give an excused absence to any student who is in the United States Armed Forces and has received temporary or permanent re-assignment as a result of military operations and to any student who is a National Guard service member placed onto State active duty status during an academic term for the period of time the student is on active duty. The college shall further provide the student the following:
    • The opportunity for the student to make up any test or other work missed during the excused absence;
    • The option, when feasible, to continue classes and coursework during the academic term through online participation for the period of time the student is placed on active duty;
    • The option of receiving a temporary grade of "Incomplete (I)" or "Grade Not Yet Reported (X)" for any course that the student was unable to complete as a result of being placed on State active duty status; however, the student must complete the course requirements within the period of time specified by the college to avoid receiving a failing grade for the course (please consult Durham Tech’s Grading System policy for more information);
    • Permission to drop, with no penalty, any course that the student was unable to complete as a result of being placed on State active duty status; and
    • Permission to drop, with no financial penalty, any course that the student was unable to complete as a result of the excused absence as set forth in 1E SBCCC 900.4 (Military Refund).
    Students receiving veterans’ benefits, Pell Grant, or any other source of financial aid should meet with their financial aid advisor to discuss their particular situation related to any extended absence for military service.
  • Pregnancy/Childbirth – Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) requires Durham Tech to adopt a policy to excuse absences due to pregnancy or childbirth for as long as the student’s doctor says it is necessary. The College shall provide students the following:
    • The opportunity to return to the same academic and extracurricular status as before the student’s medical leave began;
    • The opportunity to make up any work missed; and
    • The same special services it provides to students with temporary medical conditions.
    The College shall ensure that instructors understand the Title IX requirements related to excused absences/medical leave. Instructors may not refuse to allow students to submit work after a deadline missed due to pregnancy or childbirth. If an instructor’s grading is based in part on class participation or attendance, and a student missed class due to pregnancy or childbirth, the student should be allowed to make up the participation or attendance credits.
     

Definition

Working Days – Days the college is open and operating under a normal schedule. This excludes weekends, closings due to adverse conditions, and holidays.