Student Absence due to Religious Beliefs — Section 224-A of the New York State Education Law

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Policy Statement

Student absences due to religious beliefs are protected under Section 224-A of New York State Education Law.

Category Name: Student
Responsible Unit: Affirmative Action
Responsible Exec: President
Adoption Date: August 2008
Last Revision Date:
Last Review Date:

Purpose/Scope

 

Applicability

 

Definitions

There are no definitions for this policy at this time.

Policy Procedures

Section 224-A of the New York State Education Law

  1. No person shall be expelled from or be refused admission as a student to an institution of higher education for the reasons that s/he is unable, because of her/his religious beliefs, to register or attend classes or to participate in any examination, study or work requirements on a particular day or days.
  2. Any student in an institution of higher education who is unable, because of her/his religious beliefs, to attend classes on a particular day or days shall, because of such absence on the particular day or days, be excused from any examination or any study or work requirements.

  3. It shall be the responsibility of the faculty and of the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to make available to each student who is absent from school, because of her/his religious beliefs, an equivalent opportune cause of such absence on any particular day or days. No fees of any kind shall be charged by the institution for making available to the said student such equivalent opportunity.

  4. If registration, classes, examinations, study or work requirements are held on Friday after 4 pm or on Saturday, similar or make-up classes, examinations, study or work requirements or opportunity to register shall be made available on other days, where it is possible and practicable to do so. No special fees shall be charged to the student for these classes, examinations, study or work requirements or registration held on other days.

  5. In effectuating the provisions of this section, it shall be the duty of the faculty and the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to exercise the fullest measure of good faith. No adverse or prejudicial effects shall result to any student because of her/his availing herself/himself of the provisions of this section.

  6. Any student who is aggrieved by the alleged failure of any faculty or administrative officials to comply in good faith with the provisions of this section, shall be entitled to maintain an action or proceeding in the supreme court of the county in which such institution of higher education is located for the enforcement of her/his rights under this section.

    • It shall be the responsibility of the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to give written notice to students of their rights under this section, informing them that each student who is absent from school, because of her/his religious beliefs, must be given an equivalent opportunity to register for classes or make up any examination, study or work requirements which s/he may have missed because of such absence on any particular day or days. No fees of any kind shall be charged by the institution for making available to such student such equivalent opportunity.
  7. As used in this section, the term "institution of higher education" shall mean any institution of higher education, recognized and approved by the Regents of the University of the State of New York, which provides a course of study leading to the granting of a post-secondary degree or diploma. Such term shall not include any institution which is operated, supervised or controlled by a church or by a religious or denominational organization whose educational programs are principally designed for the purpose of training ministers or other religious functionaries or for the purpose of propagating religious doctrines. As used in this section, the term "religious belief" shall mean beliefs associated with any corporation organized and operated exclusively for religious purposes, which is not disqualified for tax exemption under section 501 of the United States Code.

Links to Related Procedures and Information

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Contact Information

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History (in descending order)

Item Date Explanation
Next Review Date August 2011  Three year review
Adoption Date August 2008 Policy Adopted

Approval

This policy is approved by:

Last Updated 1/4/18

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