Absense from Class for Religious Observances
|Effective Date||December 17, 2007|
|Responsible Office/Person||Student Affairs|
University policy and Massachusetts state law require faculty to offer make-up assignments or exams to students who are absent for religious observance. Instructors must accept a student’s assertion of the need to be absent from class for religious reasons, but students are required to notify instructors in advance that they will miss class in order to observe a religious holiday.
As an aid to curriculum planning, the Division of Student Affairs and the Office of the Provost offer the following list of major religious observances for the 2008 calendar year. Please note that Jewish, Baha’i and some Muslim religious observances begin at sundown of the pervious day.
Major Days of Religious Observance 2008
Muharram (Islamic New Year)/M January 10th
Shiva Ratri (Worship of Shiva)/H March 6th
Naw-Ruz (Baha’i and Iranian New Year)/Ba March 21st
Ramanavami (Birth of Rama)/H April 13th
Hanamatsuri (Birth of Buddha)/B April 8th
First days of Passover/J April 10th-26th
Baisakhi (Brotherhood-Sisterhood)/S April 14th
Good Friday (Crucifixion of Jesus)/C March 21st
Easter (Resurrection of Jesus)/C March 23rd
First day Ridvan (Declaration of Baha’u’llah)/Ba April 21st – May 2nd
Shavuot/J June 8th
Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) J September 30th - October 1st
Ramadan Begins /M September 2nd
Yom Kippur (Atonement)/J October 9th
Sukkit (Festival of Tabernacles)/J October 14th – October 20th
Diwali (Festival of Lights)/H October 28th
Eid al Fitr (End of Ramadan)/M October 1st
Birth of Baha’u’llah/Ba November 12th
Bodhi Day (Enlightment)/B December 8th
Eid al-Adha (Day of Sacrifice)/M December 8th
Christmas ( Birth of Jesus)/C (legal holiday) December 25th
*B=Buddhist; Ba=Baha’I; C=Christian; H=Hindu; J=Jewish; M=Muslim; S=Sikh
Students planning to be absent from class due to religious observance must notify their instructors at least one week in advance. In the event of a dispute between a student and a faculty member, either party should contact the department head or the Ombuds Officer at (509) 910-6892.
The Division of Student Affairs, in collaboration with the Provost’s Office, will annually update the religious holidays.