Excusing Students from Instructional Activities
Traditionally, our District has used an informal process for students to be excused from Instructional Activities. This process is one in which the teacher is made aware of a desire for students not to participate in a particular unit of study. Typically, after conversations with the parent and the student, the student is provided an alternate area of study.
If the informal process does not provide the needed adjustment to the area of study, the following process is provided for hearing objections to instructional activities that are recognized in the School Code and for certain areas that go beyond the requirement of the School Code.
Parents, guardians or students 18 years of age or older may request that a student be excused from a particular portion of instructional activity. A student may be excused under a specific provision of the School Code, for religious reasons, for other constitutionally protected reasons, or because the activity is offensive to parents, guardians, and students’ beliefs.
To be excused from a portion of instructional activity, the request must:
- be made in writing;
- describe in detail the portion of the activity from which the student is to be excused;
- if applicable, state the provision of the School Code upon which the exemption request is based;
- if the exemption request is not based on a specific provision of the School Code, explain in detail why that portion of the activity is objectionable and offensive to parents’ beliefs;
- if applicable, cite the religious or another constitutionally protected basis for the request;
- be submitted to the principal at least five days in advance of the activity in question.
Additional information may be requested from the person submitting the request. The decision whether to grant an exemption from an instructional activity will be made as soon as reasonably possible in advance of the activity. Administration will determine if the reasons given are sufficient for a student to be excused from a portion of instruction.
If a student is excused from an instructional activity, an alternative educational experience will be provided.