A  New Policy Strives for Better Attendance

As the school year progresses, tardies are becoming more frequent, along with a new policy revolving around them.

As many students arrive late to school, each of them is given a tardy slip that must be filled out before they can enter. Since many students are late each day, a new policy has been in effect since October 24, 2022. With this new policy, students who are late to class throughout the day will now be required to get a tardy slip in order to enter type. Although tardy slips are now required, do students and staff indeed find them necessary?

Tardy slips are used in order to permit students to enter class after the late bell has rung. They hold information such as the student’s name, the date, and the reason for being late. A student’s tardiness can either be excused or unexcused, depending on the situation. After a certain amount of tardiness, there are usually some negative consequences. Tardy slips are useful for letting staff on campus know which students are late. They may even let teachers know why the student is late. In these cases, tardy slips can be seen as beneficial to those on campus. 

“Tardies have become an issue. Every morning, there are at least 40 students or more late to school. It’s 8:40 a.m and there is a long line of students. I hope this new policy helps minimize the number of students that come late,” stated Ms. Argueta, a 12th-grade counselor.

Tardiness has been affecting attendance and interfering with the class time of students. The new policy was created to solve these issues and motivate students to arrive at class on time. Teachers are now expected to close the door once the late bell rings and cannot let tardy students in without a pass. After each tardy a student receives, different procedures will be followed depending on the number of tardies the student has. 

Huntington Park High School’s new tardy policy is found on the “Extra! Extra! Spartans Read All About It” page, under the date 10/23/2022. The new policy states that every three tardies will be counted as one absence for the student. For seniors, ten absences will result in losing their senior activity privileges. At the sixth tardy, students will be referred to the dean’s office and have lunch detention, with similar consequences for the seventh and eighth tardy. Once a student has acquired nine tardies, they will no longer be allowed to participate in extracurricular activities. Although these consequences may motivate some students to get to class on time, others have conflicted feelings about them. After all, there are certain factors that have to be taken into consideration as to why a student may be late.

“I like the idea of tardy passes happening after lunch; that makes sense to me. However, in between passing periods, I think it doesn’t really work just because of the construction happening right now. I’m thinking extending the passing period by a couple of minutes would make things fair,” stated Mr. Amparan, a science teacher. 

While some recognize the benefits of the new tardy policy, others are noticing the issues that come with it. Students find that it takes longer to get to class because of the limited number of paths due to construction. The path to certain buildings can be a great distance that is difficult to get to in a 6-minute passing period. For instance, a student could have their class in the 300s building and then have their next in the 30s building or vice versa. With this in mind, not every student is late without good reason because there are other factors that come into play. The long lines to receive a tardy slip are also being seen as an issue since they cause students to miss out on more class time. While the idea behind the new policy and tardy slips may revolve around good intentions and building good habits, not every solution to a situation is going to be perfect. 

Schools strive for students to arrive at class on time and be ready to learn. The goal is to ensure all students have good attendance in order to do well in their classes. Not only does it help them keep up with their classes, but it also helps students get into the habit of being punctual, which can be an important trait for the future. While there are mixed feelings about the policy, in time we’ll see how effective these tardy procedures really are.

Written By Staff Writer: Melissa Sanchez

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