Community Service Time Offered in Modified Tardy Policy

Students can now choose to contribute to the community instead of spending time in detention


Getting students to contribute to the community instead of doing nothing during detention, the Student Success Office has established community service for students to serve time for their tardies. “The tardy policy exists to help students understand the importance of being on time for classes and not disrupt the learning environment by coming in late,” Assistant Principal Arlene Andrade said. Illustration Credit: Tishie Nyitray

Alyssa Rose

To change up the tardy policy, students now have the option to do community service as an alternative to attending detention. After creating a structured service routine, students will help beautify the school grounds and assist teachers in their classrooms. 

That’s kind of how we view all of our policies and why we have the consequences that we do,” Assistant Principal Arlene Andrade said. “I think they are very fair because most of them start with a warning, so as long as you’re being made aware, then that offers you the ability to be able to change.”

By doing community service, teachers hope to reinforce future career-wise expectations among students. 

“To be fair, there are instances where tardies are understandable; life happens,” English teacher Kristina Haley said. “I feel it contributes to a student’s negative perception of school, and that’s likely already an issue if a student is habitually tardy. Community service sends the message that a student cannot simply ‘opt out’ of school because of tardiness.”

If the administration notices an increase in tardies, the school is looking at implementing a stricter policy to reinforce its importance.

“I’m very thorough about making sure to explain to them the ‘whys’ of why these things occur,” Andrade said. “As you can see based on the policy, it can get anywhere as detrimental as an RPC or a suspension. Those things are instituted because there has to be some sense of seriousness to it as well.”

Some students have trouble arriving to class on time due to their classes and socialization availability. 

“Culinary sometimes causes me to leave later because of cleaning up,” sophomore Kaleb Atencio said. “And then, I don’t get to see friends often because we don’t have class together, so walking with them is the only chance I get, which makes me late.”

In the midst of tardiness, there are hopes for student growth and preparation as they learn timeliness in the professional atmosphere. 

The best thing for me was always doubling the time for me to get there,” Andrade said. “So like if it takes me 15 minutes, I am ready 30 minutes before so I can leave and make sure that I’m on time. Parents included, and students, think that you have to be on campus at seven o’clock in the morning.”