Continuing this year will be senior exemptions on finals which will be available to certain students. Brought up as an idea from representatives within Superintendent’s, Dr. Rick Westfall, cabinet, many sought to see a past tradition be brought back.

“We worked on it with students and district personnel all last year to really determine how we could get the policy going,” Principal Michell Somerhalder said. “It was really the student’s input and their desire to have it that led the charge of us bringing it back.”

To be exempt from an exam seniors must have the following qualifications:

  • An 85 average in the course, meaning they must have at least an 85 for a semester grade without the addition of a final
  • No more than three unexcused absences per semester (ABS, MABS, PRN, TRU are all unexcused absences)
  • Have no ISS, OSS, pr DAEP assigned days

For students in a CTE course, exemptions are still possible but teachers may also give an industry based certification test as a substitute. Students in KCAL courses may also be eligible for exemptions so long as it falls within the guidelines.

Courses that are not eligible for an exemption include:

  • Courses that require a capstone assessment, project, portfolio, performance or performance evaluation as a final
  • Blended Learning Courses
  • Dual Credit Courses
  • Online Credit Courses

Exemptions will be determined no later than the Monday of the week of exams and teachers will have notified students of their eligibility at this time as well. Students who are exempt do not have to attend class the day of their final and their absence will not count against them.

Additionally, if exempt students choose to take the final exam, they will not be penalized for any final grade that will lower their semester average.

“You can get the rigor of the test,” Ms. Somerhalder said. ” I love that you still take the exam and see what you’ve learned all year.”

If uncertain about the final, it is best to talk to the teacher directly to be sure what’s the right course of action.

“We appreciate you, you’re doing great things,” Ms. Somerhalder said. “Here’s another option for something that you may enjoy.”

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By Serena Shabout

Serena is a senior and News Editor of Talon. She loves books, blacklist and bundt cakes.

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