By Sydney Nolan
Let’s play a quick game of “Would you rather?” Which sounds better – a day filled with seven or eight periods of sitting in class staring out the window at the gorgeous spring day, or a morning spent sleeping in followed by an afternoon out with friends? It’s pretty much a no-brainer we’d all pick the latter. Many high school seniors around the country do in fact pick the sleeping in and hanging with friends option in the form of “Senior Skip Days” every spring. This decision isn’t always as easy as it seems, however. Whether or not your school officially sanctions a Skip Day, be sure to follow these dos and don’ts for a successful skip!
DON’T jeopardize your relationships with teachers.
Even if Skip Day is a well-known activity for seniors to participate in, make sure you won’t be risking ruining a relationship with a favorite teacher, or one who helped you out a ton during the college search and application process. Obviously most teachers would rather have you in class than miss a day towards the end of the year, even if it’s an event a ton of seniors participate in. It’s also not totally unheard of for teachers to get back in touch with a school if they think what they wrote in a recommendation or supplemental material for an application no longer stands based on your participation in things like Skip Day. Some teachers have also altered grades for students not in class on Skip Day, which can be a huge deal if you’re on a college waitlist or are on the borderline in terms of final semester grades that will be reported to the college you’ve settled on.
DO double-check deadlines and test dates.
Even though spring weather can be amazingly tempting, it’s important to remember that many of us face a season full of final projects and exams before we can enjoy the summer. Keep these deadlines in mind when deciding whether or not you’ll participate in Skip Day. After all, it’s definitely not a smart idea to skip on a day you have major projects due or tests coming up. Not only will you not want to miss important projects and exams, but it’s also key to go to any study sessions or review days teachers may be having as well. Check (and double-check) your syllabus, talk to teachers, and make sure you know exactly what’s coming on a day you plan to skip before actually following through with that plan.
DON’T keep your plans a secret.
If you’re planning to participate in a Skip Day, it’s not a good idea to keep people like your parents or teachers in the dark. If Skip Day is a common thing that lots of seniors participate in every spring at your high school, it shouldn’t be difficult to approach teachers ahead of time to let them know you’re planning to participate with your classmates, and ask for any classwork or materials you’ll miss. We know a day of homework probably wasn’t what you had in mind, but it also won’t kill you to work on things or read for a class or two for twenty minutes since you’re missing hours of class on Skip Day!
It’s also important to keep your parents in the loop in terms of what you’re planning to do. Even if Skip Day is a sanctioned event, it’s Mom and Dad who will learn about your absence first if you don’t let the school know ahead of time. They can also be great allies to have on your side should you run into some unexpected or unintended consequences as a result of skipping.