Staff Editorial

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Add-Drop time change promises condensed madness
The beginning of each semester brings a familiar madness. Students shop for and, at long last settle into the right classes. Per a new policy enacted by Macalester’s Educational Policy and Governance Committee, students will have two weeks, not three, to find the right classes.

That’s rights, folks: the first two weeks of class, now with 150 percent of the usual frenzy.

The rationale for the condensation of the add-drop period is innocent and logical enough. Students who add a class two and a half weeks into the semester may indeed often finds themselves at a disadvantage that is not insignificant.

But are things ever so simple? Motivated students have surely successfully entered classes “late in the game” in numerous instances. And what about weekly night classes, which students may now only visit twice before having to make a decision?
We trust that EPAG and the registrar will take a gingerly, trial-and-error approach to implementing this policy, and will be open to making changes if necessary. We also look to student representatives to EPAG, who must actively articulate student feedback on this policy when it is implemented.

Finding reasonable, equitable consensus on absences

EPAG has also been discussing creating standardized recommendations for addressing student absences resulting from participation in “college-sponsored activities.” The plan would specifically deal with how students are penalized for missing meetings outside of regular class time, determine how absences are authorized and provide for making up work.

The plan originated with a faculty complaint and was then examined in Athletic Advisory Board meetings about dealing with absences student athletes incurred when participating in games or team travel. It became clear scheduling conflicts are a more widespread issue, and that any plan would have to be applied campus-wide.

We’re glad the AAB is lending a helping hand to balancing student academics and extracurricular activities, not tipping the scales in athletes’ favor. As we always seem to be saying, we do as much learning outside the classroom as in it, and we’re appreciative that Macalester recognizes and supports us for this.