Religious observances and class attendance

The following message was sent to students, faculty and staff on Sept. 14.

As the academic year begins, and several holidays approach – including Eid al-Adha, Rosh Hashana, Navaratri and others – our offices would like to take a moment to remind you of the SUNY New Paltz policy regarding religious observances. The policy, which you can find in the Undergraduate Catalog, states:

Throughout the academic year, many students and faculty will need to miss class or reschedule assignments, exams, practices, or other school commitments in order to observe religious holidays that fall on class or work days.

Students who will be taking time to observe these holidays should communicate with faculty, coaches, etc. as soon as possible regarding absences for religious observations and be prepared to discuss plans for making up missed work. Faculty will continue to respect the needs of our students and, in compliance with the New York State Education Law (Chapter 161, Section 224-a)2, honor students’ requests for such rescheduling and collaborate with them to determine a path to make up missed work.

This policy applies to all religious holidays, whether noted or not on the academic calendar.

Faculty are all aware of this policy and have received a reminder for the beginning of the year. Please be sure to reach out to your instructors ahead of planned absences in order to make arrangements for completion of your work.

Wishing you a successful semester,

Barbara G. Lyman
Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs