Coachella Cut Day

Coachella is another annual music festival that is held at Indio, California over two weekends. I was looking at the lineup and this article caught my attention. The first day just opened up today and thousands of students across LA have ditched school for this event. Students ditching school every year has become an annual custom and teachers and schoolboards are immensely fed up with it. One of the elite prep academies, Harvard-Westlake School even established an “official Coachella detention” policy this year. Now I think that is a bit extreme.

The Passion Pit @ Coachella

The Passion Pit @ Coachella

This event does only happen once a year and having students ditch one day of school for this event seems quite understandable. Even one of the teachers, Steve Klima from Palisades Charter High School said, “Coachella weekends become just one of those things you have to plan around”. I definitely agree with that. Giving out detentions just because students are ditching that one day of school for a music event honestly would not stop students from going. In their minds they would probably go like, “Psh, it’s just one detention.. who gives”. I have cousins who are currently high school seniors in California and they ditched school today for this event as well. Of course they don’t have the perfect attendance records because of family and medical issues, etc. But wouldn’t adding a detention onto that make their academic record look worse? And worst of all the whole purpose of the policy wouldn’t even work. Instead of working against the students, it seems to make more sense for the schools to work with this issue since they are only ditching ONE day of school. But, it would be an issue if students were to ditch more than a day for such events.

I asked my cousins if their parents allowed them to ditch school and they said, “Yeah! Why not?” and I was like.. well, this is your senior year in high school and grades do matter. They replied, “It is only ONE day of the school year I am actually ditching school for a non-medical reason and this event does only happen ONCE a year. It isn’t like I’m constantly ditching school to travel around for music festivals.” I didn’t have anything to say to that because that did make sense. It’s senior year, they’ve had their fair share of studying for APs and such, cut them some slack! One school even purposely scheduled their grading day the same day Coachella starts…. now that’s just asking for trouble.

Metric @ Coachella 2013

Metric @ Coachella 2013

So the bottom line is, I personally don’t think giving out detentions would do anything, because in the end they still ditched school. What are your views on this? Coachella absence policy, yay or nay?


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