Faculty may drop no-shows

Make sure you set your alarm clock correctly on the first day of class next semester. If you don’t show up, you could find out that you’ve been dropped from the class.

The Professional Concerns Committee (PCC) of Northern Kentucky University recently passed a change of policy regarding whether or not to give faculty the ability to drop a student on the first day of class if they do not show up. That change will begin next semester if the Faculty Senate passes the policy Dec. 10.

“There’s a couple of reasons for this,” said Robert Kempton, regents professor of chemistry. “Students are signing up for 18 credit hours when they only need 14 and end up dropping the courses, and some students are ‘shopping around’ and drop all the courses simply to get the financial aid.”

Another reason behind the policy is the number of seats available in the lab classrooms, such as Landrum room 103. There are a very limited number of seats because of the number of computers in the room.

When a student doesn’t attend during the first week and then later drops the course, no one else is able to take advantage of the open seat because enrollment is only allowed during that first week period.

The policy change reads “…some courses or departments may require a student to attend the first class meeting, or notify the instructor of their expected absence, in order to avoid an immediate, faculty initiated, withdrawal from the course.”

There will be help for students who genuinely cannot make it to their first day of classes and still want to take the class. “If a student is dropped by mistake, if for instance they are in the hospital or something, they will be able to get back into the class. We were assured of that by the administration,” said Kempton.

Mary Carol Hopkins, another member of the faculty who serves on the Professional Concerns Committee, said that this isn’t really a new policy, it’s just one that hasn’t been enforced much in the past.

When asked about whether an effort would be made to contact students before they are dropped if this policy went into effect, Hopkins said that the feeling among the faculty is that it’s up to students to know their own status and should contact faculty ahead of time if they are not coming to class.

Hopkins believes that the university cannot let students stay on the roll only for purposes of financial aid income.