Not really. I know extra-classroom activities are important to students' college experiences.
But I hate the number of times I get excuse notes from a given activity coordinator or faculty member. The rules say that I have to accomodate the students, give them make up quizzes or whatever.
And mostly these students are good folks. Typically, they're earnest, hard-working, disciplined, good classroom contributors. So I'm not irritated at the students, but at the extra work these excused absences require of me (because I'm a lazy so and so).
The questions of the day, then: Does your school limit the number of excused absences any given activity can request?
For example, can the Football coach request that students on the team miss 7 Fridays out of 15 in a fall semester? (For travel days, or practice on Friday morning before travel.)
What number of excused absences do you think is reasonable to allow?
Do you think it's okay for a school chorus to go on a tour for a week and miss all classes that week?
Can I require students to miss a sport practice in order to do a required activity for my class? Should I be able to?
Editing for further thinking.
I should be able to just easily accommodate these students, and the ones who are sick and don't do the assignment, miss the quiz, or whatever.
BUT, I plan the heck out of my classes. I try to make sure that readings make sense in their order, discussion topics and readings build on one another, quizzes contribute to student learning, in class activities and exercises help students learn in different ways. I try to accomodate different learning styles, using different strategies to help students practice skills in reading, writing, discussion, group work, notetaking.
I've been averaging 10-15 emails or excuses a week lately. Any one of these, by itself, isn't outrageous in any way. But if I plan on about a quiz a week, and even one student in each class needs to take a make-up quiz, then I have to write not three, but six quizzes. And if the students can't all make it to my office hour at the same time to take the make up, then more.
If I get sick, of course, we probably cancel class, and then I have to figure out how to make things work for the students.
BUT, I don't lose my paycheck. If I get sick, I can take a sick day. If I miss meetings, they'll probably happen without me, though I may get stuck with extra work (Hey, Bardiac would probably be willing to do task X, right?).
And in most adult situations, if I get sick or need to do X that I consider important, people at my job will accommodate my needs. As an adult, I hope for and expect reasonable accommodation. I can file a tax extension, reschedule most appointments, and so forth.
So I'm conflicted: sure, I should accommodate my students as adults. But dang, having to think of and write six useful quizzes instead of three? Having to figure out how to recreate an exercise for a student who missed working with other students?
I guess the planned excused absences for activities feel as if their schedulers actively disrespect the work I do, and I resent that. They put their activity ahead of my class.
I don't mind students putting health, family, friends, whatever ahead of my class. I just don't think they should expect me to put their stuff ahead of my own stuff. Maybe that's it?