On Friday June 15 the administration at RUHS denied a graduating student the opportunity to walk with her class at graduation. Her “offense”? Missing graduation practice (the second of two and she had attended the first) that day due to illness.
Too ill to call and not able to make it, what do you think a reasonable course of action would be? Review with her later what she missed and get her ready? Or, tell her tough luck you missed the practice and weren’t excused and you will not walk-end of story? Sadly, the principal, with the support of the superintendent, opted for the latter. How does this kind of decision get made? What has happened to listening to the whole story, applying reason and problem-solving skills and trying to find a fair resolution? Why did the administration draw a line in the sand instead of using empathy to understand the issue through the young student’s eyes and using their discretion (yes there is discretion that can be exercised by those in authority in most every situation) to make sure their course of action was wise and just?
Everyone I’ve spoken to about this incident (and most have no connection to the student or the high school but are parents themselves) found it shocking that the school would impose such a harsh punishment over missing a graduation practice. This is not a zero tolerance school safety issue we’re talking about after all. In my opinion the principal and other involved administrators owe this student an apology. They can’t give her back what she missed that night, a very important and special night for our high school students, but they can at least take the high road now and set a good example by owning their mistake and holding themselves accountable.
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