During my final two years of high school, I skipped school quite a bit. How many times, I couldn’t tell you. But it was a regular thing.
Signatures were forged. Doctor’s notes were written. Phone calls were made from pay phones, my friends and I posing as each other’s parents.
I didn’t do it to get drunk. I didn’t do it to get high. I didn’t do it to get laid.
My reasons were fairly benign.
Sometimes it was to head out on a road trip with my friends.
Sometimes it was to simply stay home and get a few extra hours of sleep.
Sometimes it was because I was late for school, and if I was tardy one more time, I’d get in-school suspension.
And truth be told, my education did not suffer.
I still graduated. I still went to college. I still learned how to play Asshole, hit a gravity bong, and find a boatload of new reasons to cut class at Clemson.
And the reason hadn’t changed all that much.
Sometimes it was because The Simpsons were on. Sometimes it was because we were in the middle of a particular heated game of spades. Sometimes it was because I simply could get up from my chair.
Which brings me to the MLK-Snow-Day controversy.
Some say that it was disrespectful to make students go to school on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, something that school districts in the more snow-ravaged counties of Georgia and North Carolina did. Others say that it was perfectly fine to use the holiday as a make-up day, because King would have wanted the kids to be in seated at their desks and starring at the blackboard.
They are both wrong.
The truth of the matter is this: A single day of school is not going to impact a child’s education, for better or worse.
If only educators had admitted this and let the kids in these school districts have the day off, then we would have avoided this silly controversy all together.