Elon University embraces the mission of an academic community that influences and transforms mind, body, and spirit. The following policy guiding procedure for the observance of recognized holy days is consistent with and complementary to the University’s mission.
In recognition that observance of recognized religious holidays may affect students’ classroom attendance and the submission of graded work in courses, Elon University has established procedures to be followed by students for notifying their instructors of an absence necessitated by the observance. This policy reflects the University’s commitment to being responsive to our increasing diversity and to encourage students’ spiritual development. In accordance with the policy, students who miss class to observe a specified religious holiday are required to discuss with their instructor when and how any missed assignments will be made up. The student should consult his or her academic dean if an instructor is unable or unwilling to grant the request. Absence from class due to observance of a religious holiday is excused according to University policy.
The religious observance notification procedure is based on the operating principle that you will act in accordance with the Elon University Honor Code. This procedure can only be used to notify an instructor of an absence from class necessitated by observance on a religious holiday.
Since religious holidays are scheduled in advance, you are expected to formally notify your instructor that you will miss class in order to observe a religious holiday by completing the Religious Observance Notification Form (RONF). Note that the form may take a few seconds to load.
The RONF must be submitted online– we are no longer able to accept paper copies of the form. If you have questions regarding the Holiday Observance Policy, please feel free to contact the Truitt Center at 336-278-7729. The deadline for submitting documentation for spring semester 2021 is Monday, March 1, three weeks after the start of the semester.
Religious holidays for Spring 2021:
- Maha Shivaratri (Hindu) March 10 beginning at 4:30 pm
- Maha Shivaratri (Hindu) March 11
- Passover (Jewish) March 29
- Good Friday (Christian) April 2
- Good Friday (Orthodox Christian) April 30
- Easter Monday (Orthodox Christian) May 3
Other Spring Religious Holidays of Importance
Jewish Passover begins on Saturday, March 27 which would typically be an excused absence day if it fell on a weekday. Also, Passover days that fall on Sunday, March 28, Saturday, April 3, and Sunday, April 4 would be excused if they fell on weekdays. Additionally, in the US, Yom Hashoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day) will be observed on April 8. It is not a religious observance, but will include a day of programming and remembrance.
And, finally, the 30 days of Ramadan are anticipated to begin on April 13 this spring and end on May 12. Observant students will fast from sun-up to sun-down, and are likely to pray and eat very early and very late. Ramadan fasting doesn’t require missed classes, but is bound to affect student performance (especially athletic), attentiveness, social gatherings, and even exams. The early morning prayer service to celebrate the end of Ramadan, Eid Al Fitr, is projected to fall on May 13th.
Students are required to make prior arrangements with individual instructors for completion of any work missed during an absence. Since an instructor may want to use the same exercise that the rest of the class has completed, students are obligated to avoid obtaining any information about that graded exercise that would give an unfair advantage over other students taking the course.
Note: When you submit this form, your instructor will be notified by email, and copies will be sent to you and to your academic dean. In completing the form, you may find it useful to consult OnTrack, where you can view your class schedule to obtain the name and the number of the course and the name of the course instructor. Your signature on the form affirms your compliance with the Elon University Honor Code.
Given the time limitations inherent in completing end-of-semester assignments or making up a missed final exam, this procedure cannot be used during the final exam period. You are expected to take final examinations at the scheduled times and to complete end-of-semester work by the deadlines set by the instructor. In the event that a religious holiday should fall during exam week, contact your academic dean as soon as possible, before the scheduled assignments or exam. There may also be certain circumstances (a concert or a performance for example) which cannot be made up. In this case, the student may be advised to take that specific course in another school semester.